Hi, I'm Jesse.
I invest in startups at Variant. Previously, I worked as an investor and on a crypto education program at Andreessen Horowitz. Prior to that I co-founded an early blockchain startup called Mediachain Labs, which was acquired by Spotify. Prior, to startups, I worked in music with some of my favorite artists.
I grew up in and around New York City. I studied Art History and Economics at McGill University in Montreal.
While in school, I started a number of businesses aligned with my obsession with music. flyers, parties, web design, a tool for event management on Facebook, and then concerts, at a time when Montreal had a super special music scene.
Back in New York, I co-founded an artist management firm focused on using new tech platforms to help artists stay independent. I was privileged to work with people I consider generational talents, including Solange Knowles, Blood Orange, Majical Cloudz and many more. That team also helped launch Boiler Room in North America, where we pioneered live-streamed performances in 2012.
In 2013, I learned about Bitcoin. It planted a seed that led to me co-founding Mediachain. Bitcoin made it possible to own a digital financial asset independent of any third-party platform, and we wanted to do the same for a different kind of digital asset: digital media. Our goal was to help creators earn more of the value they contribute to platforms that distribute their work. Mediachain Labs was acquired by Spotify in early 2017.
Follow me @jessewldn
I've put out essays, podcasts, videos and more. Here is all my stuff.