Venture capitalist Tim Draper thinks cryptocurrency will grow more than 10x by the end of 2023. He’s not the only crypto mogul whistling in the dark.
Dduring an interview with Forbes in January of this year, venture capitalist Tim Draper made an ambitious prediction: Bitcoin would hit $250,000 within a year. At the time, Bitcoin was worth around $41,000.
“This is the year it’s going to happen,” insisted Draper, who paid $18.7 million at a US Marshals Service auction in 2014 for his stash of around 30,000 bitcoins (yes , that’s $623 per bitcoin). “By the end of this year or early next year.”
Suffice it to say, Draper’s prediction doesn’t pan out. Bitcoin has lost more than half of its value since the start of the year, falling from $47,000 on New Year’s Day to around $20,000. He is one of four crypto tycoons who are no longer billionaires thanks to the digital currency crash. But Draper isn’t backing down. Reached via email, Draper reiterated his price target. “I’m more convinced than ever that this is happening,” he said. “By the end of 2022 or the beginning of 2023.”
Since early March, these eleven people have lost the most money in crypto. Only seven are still billionaires and they have lost a total of $61 billion in the past three months.
Fred Ehrsam, co-founder and former chairman of crypto exchange Coinbase, insists that the market meltdown is nothing more than growing pains. “One thing most people don’t fully grasp is that it takes years, if not decades, to go from a new infrastructure-level technology breakthrough (like cryptography) to a vibrant ecosystem of consumer apps. “, tweeted Ehrsam earlier this week. The 34-year-old computer genius is now worth around $900 million, up from $2.1 billion in March.
One reason Ehrsam may have a cool head: His fortune includes around $367 million in after-tax revenue from the sale of Coinbase stock, which he unloaded last year at an average price of 316 dollars per share (Coinbase is currently trading at around $52 per share). ). Ehrsam seems to see the market meltdown as a buying opportunity: He bought $77 million worth of Coinbase shares on behalf of his venture capital and crypto investment firm, Paradigm Capital, in May for between $60 and $73 per share.
Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, bitcoin investors, twin brothers and founders of crypto trading firm Gemini, have also seen their fortunes plummet from around $4 billion in March to $3.2 billion now. They laid off 10% of Gemini staff on June 2, citing “crypto winter.” But they didn’t let the market implosion dampen their style. Their retro rock band, Junction of Marsis currently on tour in California and in early June the twins were filmed in a bar in Asbury Park, New Jersey singing Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin’ about a week after announcing Gemini’s layoffs. As of press time, tickets for the Mars Junction show in Berkeley tonight are $15 each.
While the Winklevoss twins play the rock star, Sam Bankman-Fried, the wealthiest person in crypto, opts for a different role: Savior of the industry. Earlier this week, the 30-year-old mop-head founder of trading juggernaut FTX made huge loans to struggling crypto companies: $250 million to crypto lender BlockFi and nearly $500 million ( including $300 million in Bitcoin, of course) to brokerage firm Voyager Digital. “We take seriously our duty to protect the digital asset ecosystem and its customers,” he said. tweeted. Bankman-Fried’s estimated fortune has fallen by just a few billion dollars since March, from $24 billion to $20 billion, largely thanks to FTX’s valuation of $32 billion in its last round of trading. funding in January.
Meanwhile, former richest person in crypto Changpeng Zhao (or “CZ”), founder and CEO of Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange, is in a wry mood. “I’m most bullish on bear markets 😂,” he said. tweeted Thursday, which was immediately followed by a second post: “No financial advice.” It may have been a joke, but CZ has good reason to offer such revelations: the SEC has opened an investigation into Binance’s initial coin offering, Bloomberg reported earlier this month. CZ’s company is also under investigation by the US Department of Justice, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and the Internal Revenue Service (neither Binance nor CZ have been charged by US authorities ).
Among crypto billionaires, Zhao is the biggest loser, by percentage and dollars, since March 11. Then, CZ’s estimated fortune of $65 billion made him the 19th richest person in the world. Today, he is worth around $18.7 billion. Not that he cares in the least. “I don’t really know what my net worth is. It doesn’t bother me too much,” he said. Forbes last summer.
Michael Saylor, a true Bitcoin proponent whose software company Microstrategy has spent around $4 billion on Bitcoin investments over the past few years, took a different approach: going on the offensive. The 57-year-old software entrepreneur has bombarded Twitter with bullish messages and recently made TV appearances on CNN, fox business and Bloomberg, where he shrugged off concerns about his company’s balance sheet. In March, MicroStrategy borrowed $205 million against its own Bitcoin, to buy – you guessed it – more Bitcoin.
Saylor is now another ex-billionaire, Forbes estimates, worth just over $700 million. MicroStrategy’s stock is down 56% since early March, compared to the Nasdaq index’s 14% decline over the same period. But Saylor didn’t sell any of his precious Bitcoins – “not a satoshi”, he said. CNN anchor Julia Chatterley this week, invoking a little-known term for Bitcoin’s smallest unit. (One satoshi is worth 0.00000001 BTC.)
“Bitcoin is going to outlive us all,” Saylor insisted. “I’m quite sure of it.”