Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao Has Amassed Biggest Crypto Fortune on the Planet: Began With a Poker Game

Written by:
Ace King
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With $96 billion, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao ranks among the richest men in the world, and that figure does not even include Zhao's massive crypto fortune, considered the largest on the planet.  To think it all began with a poker game.  


Zhao is a Canadian citizen, was born in China’s Jiangsu province. His father, a university professor, was exiled to the countryside during the Cultural Revolution and eventually moved his family to Vancouver.

Zhao would go on to study computer science and eventually landed finance jobs in Tokyo and New York.

But his road to crypto riches all began at the poker table.

In 2013, he was involved in a friendly poker game with Bobby Lee, then CEO of BTC China, and investor Ron Cao, who both encouraged him to put 10 per cent of his net worth into Bitcoin.

He would end up selling his apartment for Bitcoin and the rest is history.  Binance has become the top destination for trading “alternative coins”

But Binance is under tight scrutiny by the US Government as well.

From the Sydney Morning Herald:

The US Department of Justice and Internal Revenue Service are investigating whether one entity Zhao controls, Binance Holdings, is a conduit for money laundering and tax evasion, according to people with knowledge of the matter. Spokesmen for the DOJ and IRS declined to comment.

Despite the probe, money continues to roll in.  The Binance cryptocurrency exchange rivals even Coinbase at this tiem.

“Coinbase might appear to be the 800-pound gorilla from a US perspective, but Binance is significantly bigger,” said DA Davidson & Co. analyst Chris Brendler told the Herald.

- Ace King,