2017 saw incredible rises in cryptocurrency’s fortunes right across the board. Obviously Bitcoin
was the big performer, topping out at almost $20,000 per coin in December, but most other altcoins performed admirably in their own right. This unprecedented success of a new financial paradigm saw the large-scale adoption of various digital currencies as new methods of exchange, as investors from all over the world sought a piece of the action.
Naturally, some did better than others, and a select few did very well indeed, but the ones making real money aren’t the investors, but the developers.
This week, global media giant Forbes published its list of the 19 individuals from the cryptocurrency
scene who have the greatest net worth, and it makes for interesting reading.
In reverse order, they are…
19. Son Chi-Hyung
18. Tim Draper
17. Vitalik Buterin
16. Barry Silbert
15. Brad Garlinghouse
14. Charles Hoskison
13. Valery Vavilov
12. Dan Larimer
11. Brendan Blumer
10. Michael Novogratz
9. Brock Pierce
8. Anthony Dilorio
7. Matthew Roszak
6. Brian Armstrong
5. Matthew Mellon
4. Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss
3. Changpeng Zhao
2. Joseph Lubin
1. Chris Larsen
Some of these names are more familiar than others. Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of perennial altcoin
runner-up Ethereum, slips in at a tidy 17th place. While Bitcoin might have hit greater cash values in the last 12 months, Ethereum has gone from strength to strength, if for no other reason than the functionality of its blockchain and its potential applications.
The number one slot, of course, belongs to Chris Larsen who, with a net worth estimated in the region of $8 billion is certainly deserving of the accolade. Much of that fortune comes from the remarkable growth of Ripple, the network that he helped to create.
All of the names on this list have consolidated their wealth in a financial sector that many mainstream pundits have decried as too volatile for real returns to be made. Their success, and that of others, shows that rewards often go hand-in-hand with risk.
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