Yes. That’s Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. He’s sitting alongside a beaming Baroness Michelle Mone, OBE — lifetime Tory peer and former lingerie company boss — and her partner, entrepreneur Doug Barrowman. Woz is explaining why he has decided to become a co-founder of their rebranded blockchain company, EQUI Global.
We reported that Woz would become a co-founder back in September. That was in the same story that we reported EQUI had canned its initial coin offering (ICO) after failing to get enough investment, that there had been a big row over how much the people who had been promoting it should be paid, including warnings of criminal consequences if EQUI were “bad-mouthed”, that the company had threatened us with lawyers and told us our every move was being watched, and that they had used a parliamentary email address to correspond with us.
After our story, the Scottish National Party asked Lady Mone of Mayfair to explain why she “continues to use parliamentary resources to further her business”, to which Mone’s people said: “Her team in her private office and House of Lords team reply to her emails as they come through.”
Given the whole fiasco, we had wondered whether Woz might rethink. Nope.
In the video, the tech luminary says:
I get ideas pitched to me every single day — dozens — and I am so busy with things that I love doing in my own life that I always say no, no, no. It is so rare — this is about the second time in 20 years that I actually said: yes, I want to be a part of this. I can’t do 50 companies at a time like some people can. I can do about one at a time — or two — and this is the one.
I also admire the people that I’m with for their past accomplishments.
EQUI says it’s a “tokenised” venture capital fund focused on tech, that aims to open up VC investing to a wider group of people. It also describes itself as “a potential cryptocurrency of safety”.
Fantastic! A potential cryptocurrency of safety! We can see why, of the dozens of ideas that get pitched to him every day, Woz has chosen this one.
Woz, WHAT ARE YOU THINKING?
We’ve reached out to Team Woz for an answer. We’ll update the story if and when we get one.
The baroness, the ICO fiasco, and enter Steve Wozniak – FT Alphaville