In some of the biggest losses, these billionaires lost more than 75% of their wealth


1 2 months. Why it could be worse as a target of US regulators and prosecutors.

It’s been a tough year to be a cryptocurrency billionaire. Fraud allegations, government lawsuits and investigations, interconnections and declining asset valuations hit a fragile industry. Its billionaire promoters lost $110 billion last year, according to forbes’ 2023 World’s Billionaires List, an annual compilation of ten-figure fortunes.

last year Forbes identified 19 crypto billionaires, the most ever, worth $140 billion. Now, those same individuals are worth less than $30 billion, as of March 10, 2023 Forbes Measured net value for inventory. Ten of them are no longer millionaires.

The biggest crash of the year was that of Sam Bankman-Fried. Twelve months ago, the crypto mogul’s FTX exchange raised a new $400 million fund at a valuation of $32 billion, giving Bankman-Fried a net worth of $24 billion and making him one of the 50th richest people in the world. Forbes Guess.

Since then, FTX has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and Bankman-Fried has no value. U.S. attorneys have charged him with multiple counts of fraud and other financial wrongdoing. (He is not guilty on all counts) Bankman-Fried’s former colleague, Carolyn Ellison, and fellow ex-billionaire Gary Wang, have been state’s witnesses. His trial will begin in October and he faces up to life in prison.

Cryptocurrencies shed nearly $700 billion in market value in the 12 months to March 2023 – down to $1 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap. On top of that, valuations of private crypto startups have declined due to rising interest rates and investors pulling money from the technology. The contagion of the crypto market, which began last summer with the implosion of hedge fund Three Arrows Capital and culminated in the implosion of FTX in November, has sparked a sweeping US regulatory crackdown led by SEC Commissioner Gary Gensler and US prosecutors, which has spooked investors and left no crypto unscathed. millionaire

Changpeng Zhao, founder and CEO of crypto exchange Binance, is still the richest person in the industry, though Forbes His net worth now stands at $10.5 billion, down from $65 billion a year ago. Last month the U.S. The Commodities and Futures Trading Commission sued Zhao and Binance for allegedly circumventing US compliance controls. (CZ and Binance have dismissed the allegations as false.) Meanwhile, Justice Department prosecutors, working with IRS officials, are weighing a criminal indictment of Zhao and Binance for alleged money laundering and tax evasion. Reuters As reported earlier this year. Additionally, the Securities and Exchange Commission is conducting its own investigation into Binance, The Wall Street Journal Report last year. The SEC is also preparing to authorize crypto firm Paxos to play a role in the issue of Binance’s BUSD stablecoin, the medium of exchange used by traders on Binance. The Wall Street Journal. CZ and Binance have not been charged by the DOJ or the SEC, and Binance has denied the reported allegations.

Brian Armstrong, CEO and co-founder of US crypto exchange Coinbase, is worth $2.2 billion–down from $6.6 billion last year, thanks to a slide in his publicly traded company’s shares. In January, Coinbase paid a $50 million fine to the state of New York to settle allegations that its exchange failed to prevent money laundering. Last month, Coinbase revealed that the Securities and Exchange Commission was preparing an enforcement action against it. Coinbase insists that it is “confident in the legitimacy of its assets and services.” However, amid the clampdown, the US-based firm is reportedly considering opening an overseas trading venue.

Cameron and Tyler Winkleves, twins face me Fame, valued at $1.2 billion each, down from $4 billion each last year, due to mounting problems at their privately held exchange Gemini. Last July, the Commodities and Futures Exchange Commission sued Gemini for “making materially false or misleading statements” when applying for approval of a bitcoin futures product. (Cameron Winklevoss dismissed calling the complaints “nonsense”). Then, in January, the SEC sued Gemini after it blew up its interest-bearing product, Gemini Earn, leaving 340,000 investors—most of them retail—with $900 million in frozen funds.

In response to the allegations, Winkleve Arn blamed another crypto tycoon, Barry Silbert, founder of crypto holding company Digital Currency Group, for the situation. DCG’s lending business, Genesis Global Capital—which was also sued by the SEC—was responsible for providing crypto loans to Earn users. in an opening the letter, Cameron Winkleves accused Silbert and DCG employees of accounting fraud, alleging that they “conspired to make false statements and misrepresentations about the solvency and financial health of Genesis to Gemini, earning users, other creditors and the public at large.” Silbert and DCG have denied these claims. U.S. prosecutors in New York’s Eastern District Court opened a criminal investigation into DCG’s dealings in January. Bloomberg Time reports. A spokeswoman for DCG said the firm “has no cause or reason to believe the Eastern District of New York is investigating.” A call from Forbes Did not return to EDNY’s press office.

Silbert, previously worth $3.2 billion, is now worth an estimated $400 million, thanks to a stash of bitcoins he says he bought in 2011. Genesis filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in January. It owes about $3.5 billion to its 20 largest creditors, although on February 10, Gemini and other major creditors reached a preliminary agreement to partially recover the funds.

Here’s how crypto’s richest investors have fared over the past twelve months. Net worth was measured on March 10, 2023 and March 11, 2022.

#1 Changpeng Zhao

Total Value: $10.5 billion (down from $65 billion)

Resource Source: Binance

#2. Jade McCaleb

Total Value: $2.4 billion (down from $2.5 billion)

Source of wealth: XRP


3. Brian Armstrong (tie)

Total value: $2.2 billion (down from $6.6 billion)

Resource Source: Coinbase

3. Chris Larsen (tie)

Total value: $2.2 billion (down from $4.3 billion)

Source of wealth: Ripple

5. Nickel Viswanathan and Joseph Lau

Total value: $1.8 billion each (down from $2.4 billion each)

Resource Source: Alchemy Co-Founder

7. Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss

Total value: $1.2 billion each (less than $4 billion)

Source of wealth: Bitcoin


9. Matthew Rozak

Net worth: $1.1 billion (down from $1.4 billion)

Source of wealth: Bitcoin, Ether

10. Song Chi-hyung

Net worth: $950 million (down from $3.7 billion)

Resource Source: Upbeat

11. Fred Ehrsam

Net worth: $930 million (down from $2.1 billion)

Resource Source: Coinbase

12. Michael Saylor

Net worth: $760 million (down from $1.6 billion)

Source of wealth: Bitcoin, MicroStrategy Solutions

13. Tim Draper

Net worth: $650 million (down from $1.2 billion)

Source of wealth: Bitcoin

14. Devin Finger and Alex Atallah

Net worth: $600 million (down from $2.2 billion)

Resource Source: OpenSea co-founder

16. Kim Hyung-nyeon

Net worth: $500 million (down from $1.9 billion)

Resource Source: Upbeat

17. Barry Silbert

Net worth: $320 million (down from $3.2 billion)

Asset Source: Bitcoin, Digital Currency Group

18. Sam Bankman-Fried

Net Worth: Estimated to be less than $10 million (less than $24 billion)

Former source of wealth: FTX

19. Gary Wang

Net Worth: Estimated to be less than $10 million (down from $5.9 billion)

Former source of wealth: FTX

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