Crypto's wealthy investors: Who they are

Around 3.6 million people have a net worth of $5 million or more

A new report analyzed the profiles of wealthy individuals, specifically those involved in cryptocurrencies: who they are, what they like to do, and what sets them apart from the rest of the wealthy class.

The report from research institute Wealth-X takes an in-depth look at the broad class of individuals with a net worth of $5 million or more, breaking the group into general wealthy population vs. crypto-interested individuals. 

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That number accounts for roughly 3.6 million individuals as of 2021 – up from 2.1 million only 10 years prior. More than 90% of those individuals reside in North America, Asia and Europe, with North America containing the greatest number at 1.5 million. 

The crypto founders formed one group, consisting of such figures as Vitalik Buterin, who co-founded ethereum, and the Winklevoss brothers, who co-founded Gemini: These figures skewed younger, more tech-focused and with a slightly greater emphasis on self-made wealth. 

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The other crypto-focused group concerned wealthy individual who invest in cryptocurrencies, such as Tesla co-founder and CEO Elon Musk or actor Ashton Kutcher. This group contained twice as many individuals who came from a mixed inherited/self-made background and with an average age around 53 years old. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
BTC ETF SERIES SOLUTIONS CLEARSHARES PITON INTERMEDI 92.43 +0.03 +0.04%
ETH n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
ADA n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
DOGE n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.

Musk famously comments on crypto and stocks, at one point driving up the price of cryptocurrencies across the board when he announced that Tesla would accept crypto as payment, then driving the price back down when he changed course due to environmental concerns. 

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The broad profile, perhaps unsurprisingly, indicates that the majority of crypto investors are young, male and entrepreneurial. Compared to the general wealthy class, the crypto class expresses greater interest in music and technology, but founders display a severe lack of interest in philanthropy compared to the other groups.  

In fact, crypto-interested wealthy individuals are on average seven years younger than the general wealthy population. 

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Philanthropy ranked lower for the crypto-interested individuals, but they expressed a greater affinity for charitable giving. However, the study did not break down the overall number of individuals in each group, meaning it is possible that the greater affinity is due to a similarly greater number of individuals in the group donating to charity.