Bitcoin has become a huge phenomenon recently. It is a digital currency that started in 2008. There is no central bank that controls it. Bitcoin supply is very limited and its value is highly volatile. Recently it has skyrocketed from a few dollars to a peak of over $17,000 per Bitcoin. Just in the last one month, the price has gone from around $5000 to over $17000. With such a huge spike, there are several people who have gone from nothing to multimillionaires, even billionaires.
Below is the list of the richest Bitcoin millionaires and our estimate of their worth. at today’s rate of $15000 per Bitcoin….
Tony Gallippi, an entrepreneur, co-founded Bitpay in 2011. Bitpay is one of the first and best known Bitcoin payment service providers. Bitpay is enrolling increasing number of merchants in accepting Bitcoins as a trading currency. Tony Gallippi is said to hold a relatively large quantity of Bitcoins; the exact quantity is unknown. Our estimate of his holdings is in the neighborhood of $50 million..
Charlie Shrem was an early adopter of Bitcoin and a member of the Bitcoin Foundation, a group that was supposed to govern Bitcoins. He also started a company called BitInstant in 2011 to facilitate customers buying Bitcoins via its stores. The company is now out of business. Charlie Shrem served a two-year prison sentence for money laundering. He is said to have bought several thousand Bitcoins cheap when the currency was in its infancy. The amount of his Bitcoin holdings is not known. However some estimates put their current value in the $100 million range.
Roger Ver is the famous evangelist of Bitcoin, sometimes called “Bitcoin Jesus”. He was a successful businessman before becoming one of the first Bitcoin investors. He invested in Charlie Shrem’s company BitInstant and later in Bitpay as well as other ventures. He has used part of his own wealth to promote Bitcoin. The size of his Bitcoin collection is not understood. We estimate its worth at around $120 million today.
As an early investor in Skype, the venture capitalist Tim Draper had achieved unbelievable wealth even before Bitcoin. In 2004 he is said to have acquired 30,000 Bitcoins for around $600 each at an auction. That would be worth about $450 million today. He is now backing other cryptocurrency adventures. His overall net worth exceeds $1 billion.
Barry Silbert was an early adopter of Bitcoin. He founded the Digital Currency Group, a company that has invested in several blockchain technology based startups. Barry Silbert is rumored to have bought 48000 Bitcoins for around $350 each at an auction in 2014. That investment itself would be worth about $750 million today. Silbert is now evidently attempting to launch a Bitcoin ETF.
The identical twins Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, well known for their attempt to snatch control of Facebook from Mark Zuckerberg, are said to have bought 11,000 Bitcoins for $11 million in 2013 which has obviously paid off very handsomely for them. The brothers have since launched several successful Bitcoin ventures including investments in Charlie Shrem’s company BitInstant. Their attempt at starting a Bitcoin ETF has been unsuccessful so far. At today’s Bitcoin rate, their Bitcoins would be worth around $1.7 billion now.
Satoshi Nakamoto is the mysterious mastermind of Bitcoin. He wrote a white paper in 2008 that described the software algorithm behind the cryptocurrency. He has not appeared publicly in years and nobody is even sure if Satoshi Nakamoto is his real name. Whoever it is, the person is said to hold around one million bitcoins, which at the current rate of over $15000 each , would be worth over $15 billion! He gets the first prize in our list of Bitcoin Billionaires!!