WTF is Hydra?

With Special Guest
Ben Middleton
Danny Carpio, Austin McKee


Welcome to the inaugural episode of the Hydra Podcast Series. Hydra Ventures DAO was summoned to invest in and incubate the next generation of community-first investment DAOs and to proliferate a landscape of organisational innovations in investing. We’re a DAO fund of funds composed of DAO operators, professional service providers, founders, and Web3 VCs with a mission to establish new market-standard practices for how investment DAOs are designed and operated. Join us to learn more about DAOs, investing and the new opportunities that the power of human coordination could unlock.

In this episode of the Hydra Ventures Podcast, the hosts delve into the world of community-driven investment DAOs (Decentralised Autonomous Organizations), focusing on Hydra Ventures. The podcast explores its mission, challenges, strategies, and vision in the decentralised investment landscape.

The episode begins with an explanation of Hydra Ventures as a "DAO of DAOs" that invests in various investment DAOs. The guests, founders, and key members of Hydra Ventures, discuss its formation and objectives. They highlight the organisation's core mission to iterate on the investment DAO model and create a dedicated capital pool for such ventures. The importance of community in DAOs is emphasised, noting that intrinsic motivation and collective learning drive member participation.

The conversation shifts to discussing Hydra's diverse membership and their areas of expertise. The challenges faced by DAOs, such as governance and member engagement, are also addressed, highlighting the strategies Hydra employs to overcome these hurdles.

One segment focuses on the relationship between Hydra Ventures and a Web3 Professional Services Agency. It's explained how they provide operational, strategic, and coordination support, essential for the DAO's efficiency and success.

The podcast also covers the operational challenges in DAOs, specifically the importance of maintaining context and alignment among members. Hydra's governance approach, including incentive systems to encourage participation and avoid common DAO problems, is discussed in detail.

An exploration of Hydra's incubation process for new DAOs is provided. The criteria for selecting communities for DAO formation and the support provided in legal, operational, and cultural aspects are outlined, emphasising the importance of a strong foundational structure for success.

In a rapid-fire session, each guest shares their personal experiences in the crypto world, the projects that captivated them, and their perspectives on controversial topics within the crypto community.

The episode concludes with a discussion on how to engage with Hydra Ventures and each guest's vision for its success. They express hope that Hydra will validate the community-driven investment model, expand DAO accessibility, and foster an ecosystem where DAOs are seen as a competitive option for collaborative investment and innovation.

Show Notes


  • 0:02 - Introduction to Hydra Ventures, a fund that specialises in investing in other investment funds.
  • 1:49 - Overview of Hydra, a new investment platform emphasising a diverse membership of founders, VCs, and experts in Web3 with a unique governance system.
  • 7:17 - Insight into Hydra's organisational structure and decision-making process, highlighting its decentralised nature and collaboration with Thing3.
  • 10:11 - Discussion on Hydra's approach to professional services in Web3, focusing on governance, legal, and accounting support, and the integration of professional services with Web3 innovation.
  • 16:34 - Examination of Web3's distributed organisations and value systems, including the transformation of traditional employment models and the introduction of a distributed professional platform in Web3.
  • 20:31 - Exploration of leadership dynamics in decentralised investment groups, emphasising the necessity of leadership and coordination despite the absence of traditional hierarchical structures.
  • 25:40 - Challenges faced by decentralised organisations in context dissemination, resource allocation, and the problem of free riding in DAOs.
  • 29:15 - Description of Hydra’s incentive system, designed to reward members based on their contributions, with quarterly initiatives and audits to track engagement.
  • 34:01 - Emphasis on the importance of community-driven organisations in investment, with insights into Hydras' unique incubation process and the simplification of investment DAO creation.
  • 37:49 - Discussion on investment strategies in decentralised communities, focusing on community alignment, cost reduction, and leveraging natural patterns of community formation for collective investment.
  • 44:47 - Scaling investment houses with a community focus, highlighting the role of Delaware LLCs, the importance of a flat hierarchy, and community engagement.
  • 48:22 - Perspectives on the potential of investment DAOs, including capital deployment, community bonding, and the vision for Hydra as a pioneering platform in community-driven investing.
  • 55:22 - Member’s reflections on the human aspect of crypto investment.