Anthony Scaramucci on bitcoin.
Anthony Scaramucci on bitcoin./Getty Images
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  • Anthony Scaramucci said Elon Musk had "scared people" off bitcoin, but backed it to soar in the long run.
  • He said bitcoin was like Amazon stock, which swung dramatically in its early history.
  • Scaramucci's SkyBridge capital has around $500 million (around R7 billion) in bitcoin and sees it as digital gold.
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Anthony Scaramucci has said that bitcoin will shoot higher in the long run despite some early setbacks - just like Amazon stock.

One of those setbacks has been the fact that Elon Musk "scared people" away from the cryptocurrency, the founder of SkyBridge Capital and former White House chief of communications told CNBC on Tuesday.

Musk's electric car company Tesla stopped accepting bitcoin as payment in May due to its "insane" energy use, helping trigger a crash in the cryptocurrency. Bitcoin traded at around $33,000 (R462,000) on Wednesday, more than 45% below its record high of close to $65,000 (R910,000) reached in April.

Scaramucci, whose SkyBridge investment firm has around $500 million (around R7 billion) in bitcoin, said he thinks the huge volatility is more to do with the fact that the cryptocurrency is in the early stages of adoption than with Musk.

He compared bitcoin to Amazon, whose stock price has fluctuated dramatically through the years.

"If you went back to Amazon's IPO back in 1997, if you held $10,000 (R140,000) of that stock on its IPO, it's now worth $24 million (R336 million). But you would have subjected yourself to eight periods of time where the stock dropped at least 50%."

However, critics argue that bitcoin is not comparable to stocks as it has no intrinsic value.

Scaramucci said he was confident bitcoin would similarly shoot higher because millions more people would adopt it as a replacement for gold in investment portfolios.

Bitcoin fans argue the crypto asset's scarcity means it can be a store of value that will protect investors against inflation, as gold traditionally has.

"Right now, we have about 125 million [bitcoin] users globally," Scaramucci said. "Our research department of SkyBridge thinks that you will have at least a billion users by 2025.

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