Alexis Ohanian – Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Reddit – revealed he is an early Ethereum investor and purchased 50,000 ETH during the asset’s presale in 2014.
His stash is currently worth nearly $82 million.
Decentralization Drove his Investment Decision
The 39-year-old entrepreneur and investor of Armenian heritage said his ancestors’ tragic history is among the main reasons he is fond of the cryptocurrency industry.
In a recent interview for Forbes, he said some of his great-grandparents were decapitated by Turkish soldiers during the Armenian genocide in 1915. The Ottomans also confiscated his family’s heirloom rugs and other personal belongings.
As such, Ohanian has become a huge supporter of assets that centralized institutions can not seize:
“Any group of people who have in their consciousness, or in their collective history, some idea of persecution, especially by a state, makes the idea of a store of value that is not controlled by any single state very attractive. And so, in some ways, it was hardwired in me then and made me, in a way, receptive to the idea of a decentralized currency.”
Ohanian understood that a blockchain protocol called Ethereum was about to be launched almost a decade ago and invested $15,000 in its native token – ETH. This means he bought the cryptocurrency for roughly $0.30 per token.
His investment is now worth approximately $82 million, a staggering 546,000% return. However, Ohanian wished he could have bought more at the time:
“In hindsight, I didn’t invest nearly as much as I should have.”
He disclosed in 2021 that he has “a lot” of Ethereum without providing further details.
His Other Crypto Forays
Apart from co-creating Reddit, Ohanian has founded another entity – the venture capital firm Seven Seven Six. It raised $500 million at the beginning of 2022 to invest in cryptocurrency start-ups and doubled down with another $177 million fundraiser several months later.