Kevin O’Leary, the popular investor who is also featured on the well-known Shark Tank series, has been discussing Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies at large in the past week. His stance is currently rather definitive and he seems to hold that they have no intrinsic value and fail as an asset class to invest in. Going back in 2013, however, it appears that his position then was particularly different, as the investor had said that Bitcoin is here to stay and that no bank can control it.
Kevin O’Leary Praising Bitcoin in 2013
Kevin O’Leary is a well-known investor, having gained a serious boost in his publicity after becoming a part of the popular investor-oriented show ‘Shark Tank’. Known as ‘Mr. Wonderful’, he has established himself as a disciplined investor, always scrutinous about his downsides and how they weigh in against the potential upside.
Back in 2013, however, O’Leary gave an interview for CBC, where he discussed Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. At the time of the interview, Bitcoin was trading at around $100 and it doubled up in value by October the same year.
It appears that back then O’Leary had a pretty clear view on what Bitcoin represents:
“This is a proxy for the mistrust that individuals have of central bankers. If you’re willing to take Bitcoin as a currency, a virtual Barbie currency to me, it has no basis, no central banker, no hard asset behind it, but if you don’t trust any other currency, this is where you go.”
Moreover, he said that Bitcoin can no longer be ignored. More precisely, O’Leary said:
“I ignore everything before it hits $1 billion in market cap. That happened recently with Bitcoin – well over a billion in value. It’s here to stay… owners of hard assets are willing to take Bitcoin, this is here to stay, that’s what’s going to happen, and no central bank can control it.”
When asked about whether Bitcoin is a legitimate form of currency to trade, O’Leary said that “it is and as soon as it passed the billion and someone bought hard assets with it, in my book, it became real.”
What is even more interesting is that he said he’s ‘willing’ to look into it and take 2-3% of his basket and put it into Bitcoin. Whether that happened or not, however, is unconfirmed.
A Drastic Change Of Heart
While O’Leary might have been fairly positive about Bitcoin back in 2013, his position now is particularly different.
Most recently, O’Leary took part in a debate with Bitcoin proponent Anthony ‘Pomp’ Pompliano. He claimed that he had put $100 in different cryptocurrencies 2 years ago and that their worth is currently $30.62. He refers to the digital assets as “crypto crap.” he has previously called Bitcoin a “useless currency.”
It’s questionable as to why the prominent investor has changed his mind so drastically over the course of a few years. This is especially so when we consider his comments in 2013 in regard to Bitcoin’s market cap. After all, Bitcoin is currently trading a little shy of $12,000 and sits on a market cap of around $210 billion. What is more, it has become the 11th largest money in the world, as its supply now exceeds that of the Canadian Dollar (CAD). The network is also growing stronger as the hash rate reaches new all-time highs consistently.