There are no more people left who haven’t heard of Bitcoin. This cryptocurrency allows some to gain extreme riches and others to suffer great losses. At its dawn, Bitcoin was worth a penny compared to the value it had in 2017-2018, so only those who once in the past made the decision to believe in the cryptocurrency and acquired at least several Bitcoins were lucky. There were also those who chose to buy not two or three but thousands of BTC, and today these people are called Bitcoin millionaires.
In this article, we will tell you about the millionaires and billionaires who have made their fortune in crypto.
Estimated number of Bitcoins owned: 1 million.
It would be wrong to start a list of people who built their fortune on Bitcoin with anyone but its creator, who naturally holds a large amount of the cryptocurrency. Satoshi Nakamoto is the pseudonym of the man who invented Bitcoin in 2008.
At the beginning, the reward for the block was 50 BTC, and the complexity of mining was so low that any ordinary laptop could handle it. It is not known whether the surname “Nakamoto” is a pseudonym of one person or a group of people, and what their current location is. However, Bitcoins that belong to Nakamoto have never been spent or transferred. According to various reports, Satoshi’s assets include about 1 million BTC.
Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss
Estimated number of Bitcoins owned: 1.5 million.
Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, surprisingly, aren’t famous for having more than a billion dollars worth of Bitcoins (about 1% of the total cryptocurrency) – they are famous for being Olympic medalists, professional rowing athletes.
The Winklevoss twins became known when they sued Mark Zuckerberg for the allegedly stolen idea of Facebook Inc. They received $65 million after the trial. In 2013, they used a part of that settlement money to buy 1.5 million BTC. Since then, these investments have grown by more than 31,000%. It is assumed that the Winklevosses became the first billionaires in the world to make their fortune off of Bitcoin.
However, the Winklevoss twins are not just Bitcoin investors. They also launched one of the leading exchange websites (Gemini Bitcoin exchange) and developed a proposal for a Winklevoss Bitcoin Trust, which the US SEC has rejected several times.
Winklevosses intentionally do not sell their coins, indicating their plan includes a long-term investment. They call Bitcoin an improved version of gold.
Estimated number of Bitcoins owned: 0.3 million.
Roger Ver was one of the first proponents of Bitcoin. He was even called the Bitcoin Jesus. Back in 2011, when BTC was trading for about $10, he boldly predicted that over the next two years the digital currency would become a hundred times more valuable than all other asset classes are. At the end of 2013, Bitcoin’s price went up from $100 to $1,200 in less than four months, and so Roger Ver’s words turned out to be true.
Ver, a famous libertarian, left college to focus on crypto projects. Unlike other rich people who buy islands and airplanes, Ver dreams of creating his own libertarian country, where each person is the sole owner of their life and can do whatever they want with it and their property.
In 2013, at the peak of its growth, Bitcoin was 300 times more valuable than other assets. During that period Ver also invested in many Bitcoin-based startups. Today, he is the CEO of Bitcoin.com, a popular website aimed at introducing people to Bitcoin. In 2014, he renounced his American citizenship and moved to a small island in the Caribbean.
Estimated number of Bitcoins owned: 0.1 million.
Charlie Shrem is without a doubt one of the most controversial Bitcoin millionaires. He invested large sums in the cryptocurrency back at the dawn of its existence. Shrem was an active member of the Bitcoin Fund and founded BitInstant at the age of 22.
At the end of December 2014, he was convicted of money laundering and received a two-year prison sentence. After that was over, he founded the startup Intellisys Capital, which sells investment portfolios made up of blockchain projects. It isn’t exactly known how much crypto Shrem holds. According to various reports, he bought several thousand Bitcoins when their price did not exceed a couple of hundred dollars. Now, those will be worth millions.
Estimated number of Bitcoins owned: 450
Eric Finman is one of the youngest Bitcoin millionaires and he isn’t shy to tell the whole world about it. The Instagram account of the 19-year-old teenager is full of pictures taken in private jets or on a bed covered with money.
Eric Finman was born into a family of scientists. His parents have doctorates in electrical engineering and physics. Eric’s mother collaborated with NASA in the 1980s and even almost became one of the astronauts to go on the Challenger mission. Fortunately, however, she got pregnant with Eric’s brother and thus escaped that terrible tragedy.
Finman first bought Bitcoins at the age of 12 using a $1000 gifted by his grandmother. He learnt about Bitcoin when his older brother took him to a protest rally called Capture Wall Street. In Eric’s own words, he was inspired by the revolutionary potential of cryptocurrency. Finman, just like other pioneers, bought his first Bitcoin when it was only 10$.
At one point, Finman sold his coins and invested the proceeds in the creation of an online school called Botangle. In 2015, Eric sold his brainchild for 300 Bitcoins. By December 2017, Finman had around 400 BTC. Once the first boom occurred, the young investor’s total assets exceeded $8 million.
Entrepreneurs Who Got Rich on Altcoins
Many people have also received millionaire status thanks to cryptocurrencies other than Bitcoin. From 2009 to 2019, there appeared a lot of altcoins, which also use the blockchain technology. Some of them turned out to be very successful, and their creators (and early investors) received huge profits.
Vitalik Buterin is a Russian Canadian who became famous for creating one of the most successful altcoins called Ethereum. His fortune is estimated to be at about $ 500 million. He receives income not only from Ether but also from third-party projects, but still the lion’s share of his capital is ETH coins.
Chris Larsen is the creator of the Ripple site and its internal XRP coin. He made a fortune after the growth of Bitcoin in 2017. Today, Larsen’s capital is $8 billion. Chris is the second richest crypto billionaire after Satoshi Nakamoto.
Changpeng Zhao is the founder of the Binance crypto exchange. Zhao’s fortune is estimated at $2 billion, and the number of traders on his exchange is growing almost daily. In addition, it was Changpeng Zhao who breathed new life into the development of promising blockchain projects. In February 2019, one of the first IEOs was held at Binance. After this successful IEO, many exchanges followed suit and began to hold such events themselves.
Dan Larimer is a successful programmer who worked at the US Department of Defense. At one point, he started participating in promising blockchain startups, one of these being the EOS project. Now, according to various sources, Larimer has approximately 700 million dollars.
As you can see, there are many who managed to get rich with crypto. These people’s example teaches us that one should not be afraid of new things. You should be interested in technological innovations and try to invest in them. Although not all promising startups bring in multimillion-dollar profits, if you do some analytical work and have some luck, you may be the next in line to be called a Bitcoin Millionaire.