The past twelve months have been a wild ride for the world of cryptocurrencies. From the Elon Musk-fueled ascent of Dogecoin, to Web3 innovations and non-fungible tokens (NFTs), to the wild swings in Bitcoin and other crypto tokens, it's been a fascinating year.
And as the crypto world continues to grow and evolve, so too do the ranks of the world's richest crypto and blockchain billionaires. Here are the Five wealthiest individuals in the space, according to Forbes' latest Billionaires list.
1. Changpeng Zhao
Net Worth: $65 billion
Source of Wealth: Binance
Fun Fact: He used to once work at McDonalds flipping burgers but now, he is the richest crypto billionaire and the 19th richest person in the world
CZ, the 19th richest person in the world and founder/ CEO of Binance is worth at least $65 billion. The leading global platform for crypto trading has grown rapidly over recent years with their services handling two-thirds centralized exchange volume last year which generated estimated revenue northwards 16 billions dollars! He also owns some bitcoin as well; an undisclosed amount from his holding company Forbes.
2. Sam Bankman-Fried
Net Worth: $24 billion
Source of Wealth: FTX
The 30-year-old blockchain expert moved from Hong Kong to the more crypto-friendly Bahamas in late 2021 alongside his exchange FTX, which raised $400 million at a valuation of 32 billion dollars. The startup's backers include Fred Ehrsam founder of Coinbase and another ultra rich guy who finances it all with his own money--a VC firm called Paradigm (headed by another one named bracketing oneself down an echo chamber). He also has some buyout companies under Thoma Bravo alongside Ontario Teachers' Plan Board for good measure! But wait there’s still more: When he isn't busy losing billions on other ventures or giving away vast fortunes through charity work -this person owns around half FTX and more than $7 billion worth of FTT, the platform’s native token.
3. Brian Armstrong
Net Worth: $6.6 billion
Source of Wealth: Coinbase
Armstrong is the CEO of Coinbase, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges and wallets in the world. Coinbase went public in April 202.
Coinbase is an American company based in San Francisco that allows users to buy and sell digital currencies like Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum(ETH) amongst others with US dollars or euros; it also operates crypto wallets where people store their funds securely offline until they want them again - making sure no one else can access them unless you allow them permission first!
The founder of this platform took advantage by listing his own stocks on exchanges which allowed him 19% ownership alongside other investors including index fund magnate Bill Gates who invested over 5% and a lot more.
Net Worth: $5.9 billion
Source of Wealth: FTX
FTX is a press-shy crypto exchange that was founded by Gary Wang in 2019. With an 16% stake and over $600 million worth FTT (the native token), this entrepreneur has been making waves with his innovative idea for FTX’s global business model which leverages both traditional finance as well forex markets to provide users access not only Bitcoins but other cryptocurrencies too!
The cofounder went onto the Google software engineering team where he helped build an online booking platform called “Google Flights." He studied math & computer science at MIT.
Net Worth: $4.3 billion
Source of Wealth: Ripple
When you think of crypto entrepreneurs, it's probably no surprise that a man who runs one the 8th largest cryptocurrencies in terms of value might be involved. But Larsen isn't just any businessman. The 61-year old Ripple CEO also has an eye on climate change and is partnering with environmental organizations across North America to launch "Change The Code Not Climate" campaign which seeks for bitcoin communities reduce their digital asset’s heavy carbon footprint through promoting sustainable development practices such as using renewable energy sources or recycling wasted materials
These are just a few of the many billionaires who have made their fortunes in the world of crypto and blockchain. With the continued growth of the sector, it's likely that we will see even more Billionaires emerge in the coming years.