Serial entrepreneur and VC Matthew Roszak has paved an impressive path on his way to becoming one of the top figures in the
burgeoning blockchain industry.
With over a decade of venture investing in technology, and founding a half-dozen enterprise software companies along the way, Roszak formed Tally Capital to build and manage his investments in the blockchain ecosystem. Over the past three years, he has invested in over 20 companies, including wallets, exchanges, payment processors, miners and beyond. Roszak is now one of the most deep-rooted players in the industry.
His most recent endeavor is launching Bloq, an enterprise blockchain software company that he co-founded with Bitcoin core developer and industry visionary, Jeff Garzik—which has caught the attention of some of the most prominent technology and financial services companies around the world.
“Early on it was important to invest in and build out the onramps, bridges, roads and tunnels of this industry, and help foster innovation and adoption,” explains Roszak. “There’s still a ton of work to do in order to get Main Street and Wall Street to jump on this train, however the momentum is clearly building.”
Roszak’s investments are comprised of industry headliners including BitFury, Blockstream, Factom, MaidSafe and Noble Markets. He also brought on longtime business partner and tech mogul Flip Filipowski to serve as chairman of Tally.
Outside of his direct investments, Roszak’s passion for the industry is further underlined by making such moves as founding the Chicago Bitcoin Center, a technology incubator, and serving on the boards of the Chamber of Digital Commerce and BitGive. In addition, Roszak was a producer of the first Bitcoin documentary, The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin.
This comprehensive approach provided some key elements in determining where next to invest his time and energy. Roszak had developed a keen network of industry CEOs, technologists and entrepreneurs to help him think through a particular start-up, technology or trend. “These discussions helped frame a ‘heat map of the blockchain ecosystem,’ in terms of what was working, not working, and where the white spaces were forming.”
Bloq was created within a month of a breakthrough conversation between Roszak and Garzik, when the two sat down last year to compare notes on future opportunities in blockchain.
Garzik is one of the premier thought leaders in the industry going back to the early days of Satoshi, and was the key technologist at BitPay, backed by Richard Branson, Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund and Li Kai Shing’s Horizon Ventures. Pre-Bitcoin, Garzik spent a decade at Red Hat developing and fine-tuning open source software for some of the largest companies in the world.
For companies looking to adopt blockchain technology, Bloq is building out the much needed scaffolding and infrastructure between the protocol and application layer. “Bloq’s mission is to lower the entry barriers and operational costs for companies innovating with blockchain technology, and help this industry scale.”
Customers are calling Bloq the “Red Hat of Blockchain.” Red Hat, currently valued at $12 billion, is the poster child of developing mission-critical software and support for enterprise customers that leverage Linux’s open source operating system. Bloq is in many ways emulating and applying that much-needed playbook to this new technology frontier.
So on what day will the blockchain revolution happen? “Think of blockchain technology adoption as a freight train,” Roszak suggests. “The train may look like it’s moving slowly right now, however there’s an incredible amount of momentum building given the financial and intellectual capital jumping on board—that momentum and innovation will continue to unfold at a significant pace.”
“This technology will have incredibly positive and profound implications for industry, government and humanity—and I envision Bloq playing a key role in realizing that future.”