Gareth Johnson
Gareth Johnson
Updated on November 20, 2023

In today’s crypto market, you have the option of investing in a wide range of cryptocurrencies. After Bitcoin (BTC) has seen the light of the day as the first cryptocurrency project in the world, other altcoins started competing for popularity on the crypto market. Among them, we find Ether (ETH), Ripple (XRP), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Dogecoin (DOGE), Litecoin (LTC), and Zcash (ZEC), to name a few. 

While Bitcoin was primarily outlined as a peer-to-peer payment platform that offers an alternative to fiat currencies, as well as a crypto asset that acts as a store of value, the Ethereum platform rose to popularity soon after its establishment as the second most popular cryptocurrency in the world by opening more possibilities than merely conducting crypto-transactions. 

To be specific, the decentralized Ethereum ecosystem created by the Russian-Canadian programmer Vitalik Buterin encompasses the self-enforcing digital Smart Contracts built on Ethereum’s blockchain platform that facilitates the development of decentralized apps (dApps), as well as nonfungible tokens (NFTs). 

But, what’s the personal profile of Ethereum’s founder Buterin and just how much crypto-fortune did this breakthrough crypto-idea bring in to its developer? Read on. 

Who Is Vitalik Buterin?

While most young boys play with toy cars or football, young Vitalik reportedly grew up with Microsoft Excel as his most amusing ‘toy’. Being recognized as a child prodigy in his early days of schooling, Buterin enrolled in the program for gifted students when his family relocated to Toronto, Canada. Later, he was transferred to the private school ‘Abelard’ in order to gain an even better education. 

Purple ethereum vector icon on white background

Vitaly Dmitriyevich “Vitalik” Buterin was only 19 years old when got intrigued by the idea of a ‘Bitcoin blockchain upgrade’ and wrote the Ethereum whitepaper. The most significant change was the ability of the Ethereum blockchain to run sophisticated algorithms, known as Smart Contracts. The establishment of the Smart Contracts was the step forward toward greater freedom of creation for the new developers of the decentralized apps. 

Apart from creating the world’s largest platform that supports dApps, this crypto-billionaire originally born in 1994 in Kolomna, Moscow, Russia, is also a brilliant writer. His fondness for exploring blockchain-related topics in his writing led him to the role as a co-founder of Bitcoin Magazine

The Main Reason Behind Vitalik’s Crypto Initiative

Intrigued by the decentralized system of payment offered by Bitcoin, Buterin wanted to give even more power in the hands of common people whose monetary moves were typically controlled by either the government, regulators, or the central banks and businesses. 

In an effort to disempower the big players on the market, this “Robin Hood’ of programmers searched for a possible solution in the crypto area. Inspired by Bitcoin’s popularity, safety, and convenience of performing decentralized transactions, Buterin initiated the Ethereum project. 

The urge to bring his idea to life and succeed in the new brave world of digital investments even made the young crypto-enthusiast abandon his regular course of studies at the University of Waterloo. 

What Is Ethereum and How Does It Function?

In July 2015, a group of blockchain aficionados established Ethereum. Joe Lubin, the creator of ConsenSys, was also among them. Being one of the co-founders and the brain behind the Ethereum project, Vitalik Buterin is best known for developing the Ethereum platform architecture and presently serves as Ethereum’s chief executive officer. 

Two years prior to kicking off his crypto project, Buterin published Ethereum’s whitepaper in 2013. In the Ethereum network presentation by its creator, the second largest blockchain protocol in the world was inspired by its predecessor – the Bitcoin blockchain, especially regarding decentralized transactions. 

Gold Ethereum coin on top of screen with charts and numbers

Furthermore, the Ethereum platform was projected to go beyond BTC’s basic functionality as a cryptocurrency and facilitate the development of decentralized applications, as a step forward in blockchain development. The inclusion of the Turing-complete programming language is the developer’s advantage to the Blockchain platform that enabled larger freedom to the new developers that would choose the Ethereum platform as a base of their dApps. 

What is Ether (ETH)?

The platform’s native cryptocurrency, Ether (ETH), is right behind Bitcoin in the popularity scale among the crypto traders and decentralized finance (DeFi) users. As the digital currency of Ethereum apps, Ether (ETH) is secured by cryptography methods to enable safe peer-to-peer transactions. 

In addition, the entire quantity of Ether tokens, in contrast to Bitcoin, does not have a fixed amount since it fluctuates and rises in response to the always shifting demand on the crypto market. As a result, the Ethereum blockchain is much larger than the Bitcoin blockchain.

How Much Is Vitalik Worth in Ether (ETH)?

Being the creative mind behind the Ethereum blockchain platform, Buterin is undoubtedly the largest Ether whale in the crypto world. Not only has he earned the ‘youngest crypto billionaire’ title, but Ethereum’s 27-year-old co-creator is also the world’s youngest billionaire rich in digital assets. 

Namely, at the age of only 23, Vitalik Buterin became one of the top entries in Forbes “30-under-30” list of millionaires. His net worth is estimated at a staggering $21 Billion USD. This figure is derived mainly from his investment in Ethereum. His value in ETH amounts to 23,153.342624 (over $1.3 billion USD). 

Why Did Ethereum Co-Founder Vitalik Buterin Destroy Most of His Shiba Inu (SHIB) Holdings?

Shiba Inu is a small, meme-coin. It has reached its new all-time high of $0.000035 on May 10, 2021, after being listed on OKEx and Binance. The coin’s designers gave Buterin 50% of all circulating SHIB coins, thus trying to secure the price of their token. 

Gold meme coin dogecoin surrounded by yellow stars on black background

Being one of the biggest names in the crypto world, Buterin burnt almost all of the Shiba Inu coins that he got from the coin’s creator. The reason behind this move of the Ether whale was to avoid being the locus of power in the crypto-community merely by the measure of his wealth. Also, his influencing profile would be easily associated with the SHIB coin and earn its developers undeserved higher position on the crypto market.

In order to amend the situation, Vitalik Buterin donated $1 billion worth Shiba Inu coins to the India COVID-Relief fund which is also close to his personal vision for ‘empowering the little guy’. The Ethereum platform creator simply burnt the rest of the Dogecoin-inspired meme-coin worth $7 billion US dollars. 

A Few Words Before You Go…

As one of the most influential people in today’s crypto industry, Vitalik Buterin is a household name in today’s crypto ecosystem. This blockchain prodigy has gifted the digital world the Smart Contracts, as well as the open-source Ethereum platform created to accommodate various decentralized applications. 

Based on Blockchain Technology, the Ethereum platform very soon after its development became one of the largest platforms for a vast array of decentralized applications, such as digital games, online businesses, crypto exchanges, etc.

With around $500 billion USD market cap, its native Ethereum coin is the second largest cryptocurrency on the crypto market. And since Buterin is the person credited for all of the abovementioned innovative technological solutions, he has rightfully earned his place as the youngest crypto billionaire in the world.  

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