No one on Wall Street embraced cryptocurrencies with as much gusto as legendary trader Mike Novogratz. After Jamie Dimon called Bitcoin a “fraud” in September 2017, Novo, as he’s known, predicted, correctly, it would hit $10,000 and keep climbing. The former hedge fund manager and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. partner became an unlikely hero of the crypto movement and a billionaire on paper. Emboldened, Novogratz announced he was starting a cryptocurrency merchant bank, Galaxy Digital Holdings Ltd. But as he was raising money for the firm in January, Bitcoin began its historic plunge. Galaxy has since reported $136 million in trading losses. Novogratz is undeterred.
You’ve become something of a poster boy for the crypto bubble and the bust. What’s that been like?
For a while, I had a series of tremendously good calls. I was the pretty face of crypto. Now I’m the ugly face.
You told me three months before Bitcoin peaked that crypto was going to be the biggest bubble of our lifetime. Did you think it was going to be the worst bear market in modern history?