Coinbase Inc. purchased Earn.com, a business that allows users to get paid in digital currency when they respond to emails and complete certain tasks. As a part of the acquisition, Balaji Srinivasan, co-founder and CEO of Earn.com, a previous partner at venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, will take responsibility as the first CTO (Chief Technology Officer) of Coinbase.
As CTO of Coinbase, Balaji will serve an important role as the technological evangelist for the company. Balaji will evangelize for both crypto and for Coinbase, educating the world and recruiting crypto-first talent to the company.
It's Coinbase's second acquisition announcement in a week.
Coinbase also noted that it is planning to double down on the Earn business within its platform due to the fact that Earn has built a paid email product that is considered one of the earliest practical blockchain applications to achieve traction. It also hired Eric Scro, a former New York Stock Exchange executive, as VP of Finance in March.
Coinbase also announced a deal to buy Cipher Browser, a mobile app browser and wallet for the Ethereum blockchain. Earlier this month, the cryptocurrency exchange launched a fund known as Coinbase Ventures to support early-stage start-ups.
Founded in 2013, Earn originally was developing chips and hardware for cryptocurrency mining. Before joining a16z, he was the cofounder and CTO of Counsyl, where he won the Wall Street Journal Innovation Award for Medicine and was named to the MIT TR35.
Srinivasan holds a BS, MS, and PhD in Electrical Engineering and an MS in Chemical Engineering from Stanford University, and has taught courses in data mining, stats, genomics, blockchain at his alma mater.