Vitalik Buterin, the 27-year old co-founder of Etherum, joins the top crypto billionaire gang as Ether prices continue to skyrocket, recording a new All-Time-High value. Buterin is officially the youngest cryptocurrency billionaire and the second-youngest self-made billionaire in history.
ETH stands at $3,164.38 at press time, according to CoinMarketCap. Ethereum prices have increased by over 320% since January 2021. It has a market capitalization of over $ 368 billion. In terms of total market cap, it is more valuable than Nestle, Walt Disney Company, and even the Bank of America.
The crypto market saw unprecedented growth last year, and 2021 has not seen the digital gold rush die down. Take a look at who Vitalik shares the top crypto billionaires stage with.
The Mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto
Satoshi Nakamoto published the paper titled "Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System" in October 2007, two months after the domain Bitcoin.org was registered. The software was implemented on January 3rd, 2009, and mined what is now called the "Genesis block of bitcoin".
He rewarded himself with 50 Bitcoins, and for the blockchain to work, Satoshi had to mine 50 coins every 10 minutes until he accumulated 1 million coins.
That accounts for 4.8% of all Bitcoin in circulation, currently sitting untouched in his public wallet for over a decade, and is ~$ 58 billion.
Coinbase's Brian Armstrong
Chief executive of Coinbase Global, the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the United States, Brian Armstrong, co-founded the company in 2012 with former currency trader Fred Ehrsam. According to Forbes, his real-time net worth is $11 billion.
On April 14th, Coinbase went public in a direct listing on NASDAQ, briefly reaching a market capitalization of $100 billion. Armstrong owns a 19% stake in Coinbase; In 2020, the company earned $ 1.3 billion in revenue and $322 million in profits.
Alameda Research's Sam Bankman-Fried
29-year-old Sam Bankman-Fried is the second wealthiest billionaire in the blockchain world. Forbes lists his real-time net worth as $8.7 billion. Alameda Research, the quantitative crypto trading firm founded by Bankman-Fried in 2017, manages $2.5 billion of assets.
A graduate of MIT, Bankman-Fried also founded FTX, a crypto-derivative exchange. He is also a former Wall Street ETF trader.
Ripple's Chris Larsen
Chris Larsen co-founded Ripple in 2012 to facilitate international bank payments. American Express and Santander are some notable names in its customer base. As the company's XRP token soared, Larsen's wealth grew by $800 million.
Larsen has a 17% stake in Ripple Labs and owns over 3 billion XRPs. Before Ripple, he co-founded an online mortgage lender, E-Loan in 1996, and Prosper, a peer-to-peer lender, in 2005. His real-time net worth stands at $3.4 billion.
The Brothers Winklevoss, Cameron And Tyler
The Winklevoss brothers are famous for their lawsuit against Mark Zuckerberg in 2004, alleging that their ConnectU idea was stolen and used to create Facebook. The twins co-founded the cryptocurrency exchange Gemini in 2014. It processes about $200 million in trades per day. Tyler is Gemini's CEO; Cameron is president.
The former Olympic rowers settled the lawsuit against Facebook at $65 million and used some of it to stockpile Bitcoin. They own an estimated 70,000 Bitcoins, in addition to other digital assets. Forbes lists their real-time net worth at $3 billion each.
MicroStrategy's Michael Saylor
Michael Saylor, CEO of business analytics firm, MicroStrategy, has a real-time net worth of $2.4 Billion. Saylor was a billionaire in the late 1990s, thanks to his stake in Microstrategy. He lost his ranks due to accounting inaccuracies leading to a crash in its stock.
He bounced back up on the billionaire charts due to his Bitcoin investments, which helped improve his company's stock prices and himself. He owns 17,732 bitcoins purchased for $175 million. Microstrategy bought 21,454 Bitcoins with $250 million from its cash reserve in August 2020, following Saylor's decision to purchase Bitcoin, gold, or other alternative assets instead of holding cash.
Saylor, a former rocket scientist, studied aeronautics and astronautics at MIT on an Air Force scholarship before founding MicroStrategy in 1989.
Stellar's Jed McCaleb
An early pioneer in the blockchain industry, Jed McCaleb, helped launch three well-known crypto firms: Mt. Gox in 2010, Ripple in 2012, and Stellar in 2014. Mt. Gox was the first major Bitcoin exchange, which he sold before it was hacked.
He left Ripple in 2013 and co-founded Stellar, an open-source and decentralized payment protocol. McCaleb's wealth comes from the 3.4 billion XRP he holds. He also owns roughly 1 billion Stellar Lumens. His real-time net worth is $2 billion.
Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.