Olaf Carlson-Wee

Olaf Carlson-Wee

Formal First Name
1989 - present

Olaf Carlson-Wee is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Polychain Capital, a cryptocurrency hedge fund. He is a renowned expert in crypto-based financial instruments, decentralized ledger protocols, private key security, and anti-fraud systems. He started his career as the first employee of Coinbase, serving as the cryptocurrency wallet's Head of Risk. He designed fraud prevention and account security systems protecting billions of dollars in transactional value occurring in more than 30 countries.

Professional Experience

Academic History

  • Carlson-Wee first heard about Bitcoin in 2011 while he was still in Vassar College. He then decided to write his sociology thesis on distributed networking and financial cryptography.
  • When bitcoin’s price crashed, he continued to work on his project even after his professors questioned the piece following bitcoin’s recent developments.
  • He emailed his thesis to CoinBase, where he then earned a job and became the first employee.
  • He has a patent pending for the Bitcoin Host Computer System, a multi-authorization Bitcoin storage mechanism.
  • He conducted agent training on cryptocurrency for the FBI.
  • He conducted agent training on block analysis for the HBI, HSI, and the Treasury Department.


  • Carlson-Wee built the operations team at Coinbase which consists of 40 persons.
  • He requested that his paycheck be distributed to him in Bitcoin and became one of the first people to earn and spend nearly exclusively in digital currency.
  • Before leaving CoinBase, he managed to lower the company's fraud rate by 75% through AI algorithms.



  • Carlson-Wee was born and raised in the state of Minnesota.
  • He was granted a civilian award by Homeland Security for his help in a $10,000,000 cyber-crime case.