- Forbes on Wednesday released its first-ever list of the richest people in bitcoin and cryptocurrency.
- Most of the people on the list are the founders and CEOs of the biggest companies in blockchain, the technology underpinning cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.
- They’re worth more than $17 billion and as much as $24 billion, though that number fluctuates daily with price swings in the crypto market.
The life of a crypto-billionaire is stressful.
After unprecedented gains over the past year — driving bitcoin, ether, and Ripple’s XRP up 1,300%, 8,000%, and 32,000% — cryptocurrencies have come back down to earth in recent weeks.
As of Friday afternoon, bitcoin was down 28% since late January. On Monday, bitcoin hit $7,000, down 64% from its all-time high of nearly $20,000 in late December.
And as of Tuesday, the total value of all digital currencies had dropped by 61% from its peak on January 7, to $320 billion from $826 billion.
While stories abound of regular people making fortunes in crypto, the world’s richest in the space are primarily those making the pans and shovels in the digital gold rush.
On Wednesday, Forbes magazine released its first-ever list of the richest people in cryptocurrency, similar to its Forbes 400 annual list, which dates back to 1982. The values are estimates based on the price of cryptocurrencies as of January 19.
In his letter explaining why the magazine created the list, Forbes’ editor, Randall Lane, said such transparency could help the crypto industry move out of its shadowy beginnings to financial maturity.
Meet the world’s richest bitcoin billionaires: