Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, who married tennis superstar Serena Williams in 2017, has revealed that he made $50 million in profit from early investments in cryptocurrency ether and shares in Coinbase.
In an interview published Tuesday, Ohanian said Forbes that he spent $15,000 to buy around 50,000 ether tokens in 2014, which would be worth around $80 million today if he had kept it all.
He revealed that some of the proceeds from his cryptocurrency investments went towards his wife’s 17-carat diamond engagement ring, estimated to be worth about $3 million, as well as funding new venture capital investments and charitable donations.
Ohanian says that he first bought ether at about 30 cents per token, before most of the general public had even heard of cryptocurrency. It is now trading at around $1,600 and is the second largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization after Bitcoin.
“In hindsight, I didn’t invest as much as I should have,” Ohanian told the outlet, saying he first learned about ether during meetings with Coinbase founders during early investment talks.
Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, who married tennis superstar Serena Williams in 2017, revealed that he made $50 million in profit from early cryptocurrency investments.
Some of the proceeds from his investments in ether and Coinbase went to his wife’s 17-carat diamond engagement ring, estimated to be worth approximately $3 million.
Through his former venture fund Initialized, Ohanian was an early investor in Coinbase, the cryptocurrency exchange that went public in 2021 and now has a market capitalization of nearly $14 billion.
With the proceeds from his Coinbase shares, Ohanian donated $1 million to former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s nonprofit Know Your Rights Camp.
He also invested $26 million in proceeds from his Coinbase investment in a Florida-based venture startup, organized in September 2020.
Nicknamed 776, after the first Olympic Games held in 776 BC. C., the venture fund is primarily focused on startups using blockchain, the ledger technology behind cryptocurrency, in social media contexts.
That includes non-fungible tokens (NFTs) that are used as membership cards and can be traded on the open market to serve as tickets to online or real-world events.
Ohanian is a huge fan of NFTs, earning more than 700 from the digital tokens, which have exploded in popularity as collectibles in recent years.
Some of their NFTs are traditional digital art best known to the public, but others are designed to offer various advantages, such as early access to a startup’s metaverse.
Other NFTs he owns even secure ownership rights to Georgia real estate and a Web3 domain registration.
Ohanian says that he first bought ether at about 30 cents per token, before most of the general public had even heard of cryptocurrency. It is now trading at around $1,600
Coinbase shares are down since its debut in 2021, but Ohanian still made a nice profit on his initial investment in the crypto exchange.
Ohanian gave his wife his favorite NFT as a gift and wore a version of the image as a pin at the 2021 Met Gala in New York.
By using the NFT image and generating news coverage, Ohanian likely increased its value.
In August 2021, Ohanian spent $550,000 worth of ether at today’s prices on seven NFT artworks that he thought looked like his wife Williams.
She gave him her favorite as a gift and wore a version of the image as a pin at the 2021 Met Gala in New York, promoting the movement. in a tweet to raise awareness and gain media coverage.
“Now we’ve put it in the culture,” he told Forbes, noting that the move would likely increase the value of NFT if they ever wanted to sell it.
Ohanian is best known for co-founding the online forum Reddit in 2005, and along with his wife, the couple have an estimated net worth of approximately $300 million.
The couple share a daughter, named Olympia.
In June 2020, Ohanian resigned from the Reddit board, asking to be replaced by a black candidate in response to the police killing of George Floyd.
His latest company, 776, raised a $176 million fund to invest in cryptocurrency, which was quickly reduced to just $6 million when the sector suffered a strong selloff last year.
The company is reportedly expected to announce a $776 million capital raise later this year, 30% of which will be dedicated to investing in Web3 startups.