Former Binance CEO CZ's fortune grows by $25bn in 2023

National Business Wire (Dec 27) -- Former Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) saw his fortune grow by $25 billion in 2023, according to Bloomberg.

Bitcoin's 160% surge in 2023 has also sent cryptocurrency moguls' fortunes soaring, including Brian Armstrong, CEO of cryptocurrency platform Coinbase.

Zhao's estimated net worth surged by $25 billion in 2023, placing him at the top of the list of crypto entrepreneurs in terms of wealth appreciation, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

In November this year, Zhao pleaded guilty to criminal charges in the U.S., agreed to pay $4.3 billion in fines to U.S. authorities from Binance, which he controlled, and will likely go to prison next year.

Despite this, his wealth has grown numerically this year, more than five times the size of the hefty fines.

Zhao has resigned as chief executive of Binance but still retains all his stakes in the exchange, and as a result, he has an estimated wealth of more than $37 billion at present.

Beyond that, Zhao owns some Bitcoin and Binance's own token, BNB, though Bloomberg did not take those holdings into account.

Looking at the Billionaires Index., Zhao's fortune is still far from its peak of nearly $97 billion in early 2022, and even below its year-to-date high of $50.4 billion in July this year.

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