As the Interplay ecosystem continues to grow rapidly, we’re thrilled to announce our latest initiative and introduce our new partner who will be in charge of it. Interplay Blockchain - a fund dedicated to blockchain technology, web3 projects and cryptocurrencies - will be led by Brett Palatiello. To learn more about Brett, his interests in the world of blockchain and vision for Interplay Blockchain, we asked him a few questions.
- Can you give a quick overview of your previous experience?
Sure. My background lies at the intersection of economics, finance, and technology. Prior to joining Interplay, I was the Head of Systematic Macro & Equities at Ridgewood Analytica where I provided research and various consulting services to hedge funds, wealth managers, and family offices. Before that, I was a partner and portfolio manager at Spring Valley Asset Management where I launched and managed a systematic global macro product. I began my career as a quantitative researcher and portfolio manager at Naqvi-Van Ness Asset Management where I traded long/short equity systems and built out the research and production technology. Along the way, I helped build token models, published an academic paper, and was a Fellow at the Economic Club of New York.
- What most excites you about blockchain technology?
I’m very excited about open, interoperable, and composable networks where information, data and value can flow freely. It opens up an entirely new space for global cooperation and creativity. It also enables individuals to claim and genuinely own their digital identities. This is a massive shift of power to the individual. Interestingly, these two examples highlight that this is not only a technological movement but also a sociopolitical one. I believe a more prosperous and equitable future is composed of open networks owned by users working together towards a common goal.
- How will your previous experience influence your new role?
In order to navigate the space, you need to have experience across several disciplines including economics, computer science, and finance. As we’ve seen, blockchain ecosystems have seen rapid experimentation and iteration, which is a great thing. However, to escape our current experience and realize blockchain technology's full potential, we need to wield the lessons of history. From my experience trading equities and macro to publishing technical academic work to consulting on tokenomics, I believe these lessons will be valuable in identifying and scaling promising ideas.
- How do you see Interplay Blockchain playing a role in shaping the future of the space?
It all starts with the mission of Interplay, and one of the primary reasons I joined: supporting entrepreneurs. The line doesn’t stop at writing a check. It requires giving them the resources they need to grow and move humanity forward. I know this is cliché, but it’s very early for blockchain technology. The foundations are still being built. So, we believe our role is pivotal not only in accelerating mass adoption but in determining the direction of the space. We take that responsibility very seriously and will use everything at our disposal to help our portfolio companies succeed.
- What do you say to crypto naysayers who don’t think it will live up to its hype?
As with most things, have an open mind. I came into the space highly critical and still am! But if you look under the hood, it’ll become clear that blockchain technologies will fundamentally change how we interact with the digital world. If you go deep enough, at worst, you’ll come out with a clearer understanding of the state of the world.
- Beyond work, what hobby or interest takes up the most of your time?
Watching documentaries, preferably true crime. Also, burritos.
- Where is your happy place?
Wherever my family is.
- Lightning round:
Favorite summer activity: Going to the beach
Favorite type of music: Rap/Hip-Hop
Last book you read: Re-Architecting Trust by my friend Omid Malekan
Favorite shoes: Jordan’s
Favorite baseball team: Red Sox
Favorite restaurant: Nobu