304 North Cardinal St.
Dorchester Center, MA 02124
A recent social media post by crypto pundit MartyParty has sparked renewed interest in the early investment patterns surrounding Solana. This interest centers around the revelation that Lyndon Rive, a cousin of Elon Musk, was among the first investors in Solana, a fact that has largely flown under the radar since Rive’s announcement on July 30, 2019.
“Why is Elon Musk’s cousin Lyndon Rive one of the first investors in Solana. Rive is a cousin of Elon Musk as their mothers are twin sisters,” Marty remarked.
Lyndon Rive, better known as the co-founder of SolarCity and cousin to tech mogul Elon Musk, has maintained a lower profile compared to his renowned relative. Despite their familial ties, Rive’s investment trajectory has diverged notably from Musk’s, especially after Rive left SolarCity following its acquisition by Tesla in 2016.
In July 2019, Rive invested in Solana Labs, the company behind the SOL blockchain. The project, launched in 2018, is distinguished by its use of a Proof of Stake consensus mechanism, which aligns with the growing interest in more energy-efficient blockchain technologies.
While Rive’s participation in the Series A funding of Solana was not singularly significant, it was part of a crucial $20 million funding round that helped kickstart the project. Subsequent investments by entities like CoinList and MXC Exchange bolstered Solana’s growth, cumulatively raising an additional $40 million.
The connection between Rive’s investment in Solana and Musk’s stance on SOL remains unclear. Elon Musk is widely recognized for his enthusiasm for Dogecoin, often expressing support for the meme coin. Additionally, Tesla, under Musk’s leadership, has included Bitcoin as part of its corporate balance sheet.
However, Solana was never mentioned by Musk. Notably, after Tesla ceased accepting Bitcoin in May 2021 citing environmental concerns, the Solana Foundation reached out to Musk via Twitter, answering “dms are open”. Musk has never responded publicly, suggesting that there is no official connection between Musk and Solana despite his cousin’s investment.
The intrigue deepens with the parallel choices of Musk and Solana’s co-founder, Anatoly Yakovenko, in favoring the Rust programming language for their respective projects, xAI and SOL. xAI’s recent announcement lauds Rust for its robustness and reliability, essential for scalable and maintainable infrastructure. Crypto expert Joe McCann commented: “Elon Musk chooses Rust for xAI. Anatoly Yakovenko chose Rust for Solana.”
In conclusion, while Rive’s early investment in Solana is a notable piece of the platform’s history, the extent of his influence or any indirect connection to Musk remains speculative. Nevertheless, it is a story to keep in mind.
At press time, SOL was trading just below $40 and was undergoing a retest after the price broke out of the trading range post the FTX crash last week. A daily close above $38.76 could be crucial to establish a new range and possibly target the 1,618 Fibonacci extension level at $57.85.