Arkham reveals Vitalik Buterin holds over $800M in Ethereum

In this post:

  • Vitalik Buterin holds over $800 million in Ethereum, mostly from his initial ETH allocation.
  • His wealth surged when ETH prices exceeded $3,000 in 2021, briefly making him a billionaire.
  • Arkham’s analysis shows his net worth fluctuates with ETH’s volatile price, currently estimated at $552.86 million.

Arkham Intelligence has dropped a bombshell. According to their data, legendary Ethereum co-creator Vitalik Buterin holds over $800 million worth of ETH.

The bulk of this jaw-dropping sum comes from the initial allocation of ETH he received during Ethereum’s launch, which was about 246,730 ETH. Alongside Ethereum, Vitalik has reportedly also invested in various projects like StarkNet.

Arkham reveals Vitalik Buterin holds over $800M in Ethereum
Source: Arkham Intelligence

How Vitalik built his wealth

Vitalik started his crypto journey in 2011 at 17 by co-founding Bitcoin Magazine with Mihai Alisie. Dissatisfied with Bitcoin’s limitations, he published the Ethereum Whitepaper in November 2013 at age 19, proposing Ethereum as a solution to Bitcoin’s shortcomings.

Vitalik soon assembled a team of co-founders, namely Anthony Di Iorio, Charles Hoskinson, Mihai Alisie, Amir Chetrit, Joseph Lubin, Gavin Wood, and Jeffrey Wilcke.

Arkham reveals Vitalik Buterin holds over $800M in Ethereum
Vitalik Buterin’s net worth. Source: Arkham Intelligence

They established the Ethereum Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to developing the Ethereum network.  In June 2014, Vitalik received a $100,000 grant from the Thiel Foundation, enabling him to leave the University of Waterloo and focus entirely on Ethereum.

“The Ethereum pre-sale in summer 2014 saw participants exchange BTC for ETH, leading to an initial supply of over 72 million tokens, with 16.53% allocated to the founders.”


Ethereum officially launched on July 30, 2015. Vitalik is the only founder still actively working on the network, overseeing its evolution, including the move from Proof-of-Work (PoW) to Proof-of-Stake (PoS) in 2022.

Despite the possibility of undisclosed wallets, his known holdings likely represent most of his wealth. According to an old tweet, Vitalik claimed he never held more than 0.9% of ETH’s total supply.

Arkham reveals Vitalik Buterin holds over $800M in Ethereum
Source: X.com

Arkham’s data supports this, showing his holdings have never exceeded 0.9%, with 2015 being the highest at 0.91%. Vitalik’s initial allocation briefly made him a billionaire when ETH prices exceeded $3,000 in 2021.

Besides ETH, Vitalik’s portfolio includes other tokens like KNC and WETH. His estimated net worth is massive compared to other Ethereum co-founders and early individual ETH holders.

Arkham reveals Vitalik Buterin holds over $800M in Ethereum
Source: Arkham

Additionally, he holds $1,290 worth of Tornado Cash’s TORN token, using the mixer for donations to Ukraine, and 6.345 million Shiba Inu ($SHIB), worth $60.65.

In 2020, Vitalik received 50% of SHIB’s supply, which briefly spiked his net worth to $10 billion before he burned 410 trillion SHIB tokens, worth $6 billion, and donated the remaining to CryptoRelief India.

Financial journey and market impact

Vitalik Buterin’s financial journey has been extraordinary. In 2015, his net worth grew from $596,760 to $551.22 million. His highest year-on-year net worth increase occurred during the 2017 bull run, rising from $4.23 million to $278.37 million.

In 2021, as ETH prices soared past $3,000, Vitalik became a billionaire at 27, with his net worth peaking at $2.09 billion when ETH hit an all-time high of $4,891.

However, the crypto bear market caused ETH prices to plummet, reducing his holdings’ value by about 75% from $1.2 billion in December 2021 to $300.58 million in December 2022.

His net worth has since rebounded, reaching $551.22 million with ETH prices at $3,300. Vitalik’s net worth fluctuates with ETH prices, given that ETH comprises over 99% of his portfolio. Whenever ETH prices rise, so does his net worth, and vice versa.

Arkham reveals Vitalik Buterin holds over $800M in Ethereum
The top 20 richest Ethereum holders in the world. Source: Arkham

Vitalik has occasionally sold ETH, with notable sales in May 2023 when he sold 200 ETH, followed by the Ethereum Foundation selling 15,000 ETH.

He has clarified, in the past, that he hasn’t sold ETH for personal gain since 2018, and when he sends ETH to exchanges, it’s for donations, not sales.

Jai Hamid

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Disclaimer. The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decisions.

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