Andreessen Horowitz Bets on Drones, 3D Printing and Bitcoin

(Forbes) Andreessen Horowitz, one of Silicon Valley’s best-known venture capital firms, said it’s never been easier to start a company, which is excellent news for entrepreneurial makers.

Andreessen Horowitz also predicted that drones, 3D printers big data and Bitcoin will be even bigger in 2014. At the same time that barriers to entry are decreasing, the addressable market is rapidly increasing, accelerating the firm’s guiding principle of “software eats world,” said Margit Wennmachers, a partner at Andreessen Horowitz.

In April 2013, the firm led a $30 million Series C financing of Shapeways, a 3D printing company. Wennmachers said 3D printing will revolutionize prototyping.

Despite restrictive civil aviation laws, the commercial opportunities for drones are increasingly obvious, said Wennmachers. “We can’t put the genie back in the bottle on issues like privacy or civil liberties surrounding the use of surveillance UAVs.”

Wennmachers added that the firm is very excited about “white hot” Bitcoin, but it’s “very early days” with virtual money unconnected to governments developing over the next 20 years at least.