Welcome to another edition of Business Twitter, where we collect the best tweets to come out of Silicon Valley so you don’t have to. This article is part of a newsletter — if you want a weekly Business Twitter roundup sent to your inbox every Friday, subscribe here.
This week: El Salvador accepts Bitcoin at McDonald’s, Brain Armstrong criticizes the SEC ahead of its potential lawsuit against Coinbase, VC Meagan Loyst shares her top 10 lessons after a year in VC, and Founders Fund explains why it led a $200 million investment in Wave, one of Africa’s fastest growing startups.
1. Bitcoin at McDonald’s
This week, El Salvador became the first country to accept Bitcoin as legal currency. A tweet by Bitcoin Magazine journalist Aaron van Wirdum shows that change in practice — at a McDonald’s.
“Just walked into a McDonald's in San Salvador to see if I could pay for my breakfast with bitcoin, tbh fully expecting to be told no,” van Wirdum wrote. “But low and behold, they printed a ticket with QR that took me to a webpage with Lightning invoice, and now I'm enjoying my desayuno traditional!”
Edward Snowden commented on the post, tweeting, “Beyond the headlines, there is now pressure on competing nations to acquire Bitcoin — even if only as a reserve asset — as its design massively incentivizes early adoption. Latecomers may regret hesitating.”
2. Brian Armstrong vs the SEC
Edward Snowden wasn’t the only one tweeting about Bitcoin. In one of this week’s more incendiary threads, Coinbase founder Brian Armstrong called out the SEC for some “really sketchy behavior” regarding its impending lawsuit over Coinbase’s latest feature, Lend.
In his thread, Armstrong described Coinbase’s talks with the SEC, which began in May. When Coinbase announced the launch of Lend in June, the SEC opened a formal investigation, asking for documents, employee testimonies, and a list of waitlisted customers.
Coinbase said it provided all necessary information except for customers’ information. The bottom line, Coinbase insists, is that the SEC hasn’t specified where exactly the company went wrong.
“Look….we're committed to following the law,” Armstrong wrote in his thread. “Sometimes the law is unclear. So if the SEC wants to publish guidance, we are also happy to follow that (it's nice if you actually enforce it evenly across the industry equally btw).”
“If we end up in court we may finally get the regulatory clarity the SEC refuses to provide,” Armstrong continued. “But regulation by litigation should be the last resort for the SEC, not the first.”
Financial advisor Douglas Boneparth weighed in on the conflict, replying, “No one should be surprised with the regulatory push and pull of crypto. The landscape is being shaped right before our eyes.”
Mark Cuban expressed his support for Coinbase in a reply of his own: “Brian, this is ‘Regulation via Litigation.’ They aren't capable of working through this themselves and are afraid of making mistakes in doing so...You have to go on the offensive.”
3. 10 lessons from a year in VC
Meagan Loyst, an investor at early-stage fund Lerer Hippeau, celebrated her one-year anniversary in venture capital this week by sharing a thread of the 10 most crucial lessons she learned in her first year on the job.
One of Loyst’s first tips isn’t necessarily VC-based, but crucial nonetheless: “Write. Tweet. Build your brand.”
“Being a junior VC is all about expanding your fund's reach — writing & putting out thought leadership will help founders come to you, and put you on the radar of your peers,” Loyst continued. “Everyone starts somewhere, and the best time to start is Day 1.”
Loyst’s other lessons explain how to have conviction during a deal, why it’s important to speak up during partner meetings, how to be creative when sourcing deals, and why the most rewarding part of VC is working with founders.
4. Africa’s startup ecosystem gets a boost
Delian Asparouhov, a VC at Founders Fund, shared a tweet by his colleague Everett Randle on Wave, which he called the fastest growing P2P payment network in Africa. “FF is super bullish on African tech companies, we want to fund more!!” Delian wrote.
The tweet was part of an announcement that Founders Fund had invested in Wave’s $200 million Series A round, which included capital from Stripe, Ribbit, and Sequoia Heritage.
Randle broke down why Wave was worth investing in: “Wave is building affordable, widely accessible financial infrastructure for Sub-Saharan Africa in an effort to become the continent's first contemporary fintech platform.”
Randle continued: “The business has all the hallmarks of our favorite investments — a world-changing vision, an exceptional team, and a history of stellar execution.”
For a more detailed look at Randle’s take on Wave, mobile money, and the startup ecosystem in Sub-Saharan Africa, check out his most recent blog post.