While the technical nature of digital exchanges and the blockchain meant that the majority of early cryptocurrency investors had a computing or mathematical background, the emergence of trading software like bitcoineranew.com has meant that it has never been easier to invest in the decentralised currency.
The inexorable rise of early Bitcoin captured the imagination of many previously sceptical onlookers. By 2017, and the Bitcoin boom, cryptocurrency had become front-page news around the world.
No longer a well-kept secret in the quiet corners of Reddit, cryptocurrency had gone mainstream. And with this notoriety came a whole new demographic of investors.
A range of some of the world’s A-List celebrities, including social media entrepreneurs, elite athletes, and even socialites have espoused the virtues of cryptocurrencies in recent years, with many dipping more than a toe in the market themselves.
Read on to find out which household names all aboard the cryptocurrency bandwagon.
It must not come as a surprise that Bill Gates, one of the world’s wealthiest individuals and co-founder of Microsoft, has kept more than a close eye on developments in cryptocurrency.
In 2014, the philanthropist excited the cryptocurrency community by telling Bloomberg that he felt it was “better than currency.”
In 2018, Gates told a forum on cryptocurrency that he felt digital financial access is a humanitarian priority which could, if implemented effectively, drag some of the world’s poorest people out of poverty.
He said: “Digital can lower the cost of a range of transactions by as much as 90%, providing nearly universal access to innovative financial products and services.”
Of course, his intellectual support for cryptocurrency is not without caveat. Gates stated during a Reddit ‘Ask Me Anything’ that he has concerns about the use of anonymous currencies to fund illegal transactions.
At the, erm, alternative end of the celebrity cryptocurrency enthusiast spectrum is hotel heiress and socialite Paris Hilton.
In 2017, Hilton tweeted, with the hashtag #NotAnAd, about her involvement in the ICO (initial coin offering) of cryptocurrency Lydian.
It does not appear to have been a one-off occurrence, either, with Instagram posts picturing her out for an evening alongside former Ethereum chief commercial officer Stephan Tual predating her interest in Lydian.
American actor turned tech investor Ashton Kutcher has a well-publicised relationship with cryptocurrency.
His interest in the digital currency predates its 2017 boom, and a cursory glance at his social media profiles identifies that he was tweeting about Ethereum as early as 2014.
Kutcher is reported to have invested in Bitcoin, as well as Atlanta-based Bitcoin payment platform BitPay, and Ripple’s XRP currency. In 2018, Kutcher donated $4m-worth of XRP to Ellen DeGeneres’ wildlife charity.
Calvin Broadus, aka rapper Snoop Dogg, first exhibited a public interest in cryptocurrency in 2013, when his 2013 album, Reincarnated, was made available to buy for 0.3 Bitcoins.
Nowadays, that album would prove to be rather expensive, but in 2013 cryptocurrency had yet to reach the mainstream to the extent that we see now.
While the volume of cryptocurrency album sales was never made public, Snoop continues to appear on the fringes of the crypto circuit, including headlining Ripple XRP’s invitation-only party to celebrate the currency in Manhattan in 2018.
Mike Tyson (pictured at the very top of the article)
Former world heavyweight boxing champion Tyson has a huge interest in cryptocurrency, and it has been the vehicle of choice for a number of his post-retirement business ventures.
In 2015, he launched the Mike Tyson Bitcoin ATM in Las Vegas, which allowed users in the Nevada gambling hotspot to trade their fiat currency winnings for digital currency.
He did not stop there, though, partnering with the company behind his ATM to launch the Mike Tyson Bitcoin Wallet, allowing users to buy and sell the currency on a platform featuring his iconic face tattoo.
He’s not the only boxing champion to show an interest in cryptocurrency, with Floyd Mayweather Jr also found regularly tweeting about the subject.
There is not a lot that Elon Musk, the brain behind SpaceX and Tesla, among other ventures, does not have an opinion on. As such, he has publicly commented on a range of currencies in the crypto industry over the years.
While his views seem to change with relative frequency, Musk referred to Bitcoin as “quite brilliant” in March of last year, calling it “a far better way to transfer value than pieces of paper.”
He is also known to be supportive of the satirical altcoin Dogecoin, collaborating with its founder, Jackson Palmer, on a number of projects. On April Fool’s Day in 2019, Dogecoin ran a spoof poll on Twitter to elect its new CEO, and Musk got the gig.
Image credit at the very top of the article: Denis Makarenko/Bigstock.com
Investing in cryptocurrencies carries risk, do so at your own risk and we advise people to never invest more money than they can afford to lose and to seek professional advice before doing so.