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Vitalik Buterin, Ethereum Co-Founder, Lost His Billionaire Status

Vitalik Buterin, Ethereum’s co-founder, is the latest victim of the crypto bear market.

“I’m no longer a billionaire,” Buterin posted on Twitter on Friday.

“Eventually, you make a mistake in your ideas, and (particularly if you are in politics, but some other domains as well) fixing that mistake requires accepting that a former version of yourself brought harmful value to the world,” Buterin added in another tweet on the same day.

He also talked about the trade-offs between “open-mindedness” and “passion” and his support for the blockchain he helped build. “Note to trolls: no, ethereum wasn’t a mistake,” he said.

In a conversation with Bloomberg News, Buterin stated, “The folks who already are deep into crypto, particularly building stuff, many prefer a down market.”

Vitalik Buterin founded Ethereum in 2014 and owns a digital wallet with 1.5 billion USD in assets as recently as November. Since then, the price of ETH, linked to the Ethereum blockchain, has dropped by 55%.

The Downfall of Crypto Assets

A sharp drop in digital currency prices and the turbulence surrounding the algorithmic stablecoin TerraUSD and its Luna token has taken a toll on crypto holdings.

As per the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Changpeng Zhao, the creator of the cryptocurrency exchange Binance, has lost more than 80 billion USD this year, or 84% of his fortune.

Despite the upheaval, some ultra-wealthy crypto supporters have expressed humility. TerraUSD was “a big idea that failed,” said the founder of Galaxy Inc, a crypto merchant bank, Michael Novogratz. Others, such as the Winklevoss twins, have persisted in making long-term investments.

Cameron Winklevoss tweeted on 12th May: “It’s all about viewpoint and HODLing for the long game,” an acronym for “hold on for dear life.

However, the twins’ fortunes are also riding on crypto startups’ comeback.

Testing Time for Crypto Bets

After the collapse of TerraUSD and as interest rates and recession concerns mount, billionaires Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss’ family office will serve as a test case for the long-term viability of crypto companies.

The 40-year-old twins have invested in crypto companies ranging from trading platform Slingshot to tax facilitator Taxbit to Praxis, which promises to establish “the city-crypto state to realize a more dynamic future” through their Winklevoss Capital Management.

According to online portfolios, they have investments in at least 50 crypto or blockchain projects between their family office and the venture division of their crypto-asset exchange Gemini.

Bitcoin and Ether, two digital currencies, are still in a nosedive, down 50% from last year’s highs. According to PitchBook data, fundraising activity among US crypto or blockchain startups is falling short of last year’s deal count for the first time since 2017.

In a statement to Bloomberg earlier this year, Cameron said, “We believe in investing in the next generation of innovators and dreamers pushing the boundaries of what’s possible.”

“They’re risk-takers who want to improve the human experience and aren’t scared to dream big and fail spectacularly,” he added.

As per the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, the Winklevoss twins have a total fortune of 6.4 billion USD. They are estimated to be among the largest Bitcoin holders, having purchased roughly 1% of the total in 2012.