We recently did a bunch of research on thousands of individuals involved in crypto around the world, and considered several factors, including the significant contributions each individual has made to the crypto community.
With all the information we gathered, we’ve put together a list of the top 25 most influential people in the crypto community. This is the 2018 edition and we would like to thank every individual mentioned in this article for making an impact in the crypto space. This list was made with no particular order in mind.
1. Vitalik Buterin
The creator of Ethereum, the blockchain platform that acts as a world computer for decentralized applications. Its cryptocurrency, Ether, has seen its value skyrocket in 2017 (Ethereum’s market cap is nearly $30 billion). He cofounded Bitcoin Magazine and now leads Ethereum, working on upgrades to its protocol.
2. Charlie Lee
The creator of Litecoin, and formerly Coinbase’s Director of Engineering. Although he is the creator of Litecoin, Lee remains focused on a number of Bitcoin-specific projects as well. Prior to Lee’s forays into the world of cryptocurrency, he held various engineering positions at companies like Google and Guidewire Software.
3. Laura Shin
Laura is Forbes’ senior editor of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology coverage, and is a co-lead reporter on the Forbes Fintech 50 list. She also hosts the crypto and blockchain podcast “Unchained”. Shin holds a Masters of Arts from Columbia University’s School of Journalism.
4. Jihan Wu
Jihan is the co-founder of BITMAIN, which sells ASIC chip technology to bitcoin miners around the world. BITMAIN is presently the world’s largest manufacturer of bitcoin mining parts, having built ~70% of the world’s bitcoin mining machines. He studied Economics and Psychology at Peking University in Beijing.
5. Da Hongfei
Da is the co-founder of blockchain group NEO, formerly known as AntShares. He is also the founder and CEO of OnChain, one of China’s most innovative blockchain technology firms. Through OnChain, Da is collaborating with the Chinese government on establishing blockchain technology standards that will apply across the country.
6. Joseph Young
Joseph is a financial analyst and journalist based in Hong Kong. Young is well-known in the crypto community for his regular contributions to Cointelegraph, Cryptocoinsnews, Hacked, Merkle and other publications. He’s also the Managing Director at NewsCrypto and B21M, focusing primarily on bitcoin and cryptocurrency news.
7. Jackson Palmer
Jackson is the creator of Dogecoin, which currently has a capitalization of $1B+ and is now a widely traded cryptocurrency. Palmer is presently a Group Product Manager for cloud products at Adobe, and also runs a popular YouTube channel that’s widely followed in the crypto community for its thoughtful analysis.
8. Doug Polk
Doug used to be a professional poker player and currently founder of Coincentral.com. He runs a highly popular Youtube channel where he talks about crypto and tweets often.
9. Fred Wilson
He is a co-founder and managing partner at Union Square Ventures (a significant investor in Coinbase) and the founder of VC firm Flatiron Partners. As a vocal advocate for blockchain as a whole, Wilson writes regularly about cryptocurrencies, investing strategies, ICOs, and more at AVC.com.
10. Naval Ravikant
The AngelList co-founder and CEO is also an investor in Bitwise Asset Management, one of the first cryptocurrency index funds. As a proponent of blockchain, Ravikant is also providing capital and advisory services to blockchain startup Blockstack, which recently released its first decentralized browser.
10. Michael Gu
Goes by “Boxmining” runs a highly popular Youtube channel that releases daily videos on crypto news as well as breaking down altcoins. Michael is known for his in-depth analysis and making crypto news easy to understand.
11. Josh Olszewicz
Josh started investing in Bitcoin in 2013, and is now an advisor to Experty.io and AltCoinExchange. He is well-known for broadcasting detailed crypto technical analysis on his YouTube channel. Olszewicz also writes regularly on bitcoin finance site BraveNewCoin.com, and is an adjunct faculty at Johns Hopkins University.
12. Ryan Selkis
Ryan was the Managing Director at CoinDesk, a site providing the latest news, analysis, and insights in the cryptocurrency and blockchain spaces. Prior to CoinDesk, Selkis was the Director of Growth for Digital Currency Group, an investment firm focused on the crypto space. He holds an MBA from MIT School of Business.
13. Brock Pierce
Brock is the co-founder of Blockchain Capital, a venture capital company that invests in blockchain related startups (such as EOS and Tether). He is the Chairman of the Bitcoin Foundation, and also runs one of the top AngelList syndicates. He also speaks at numerous blockchain events and conferences around the world.
14. Brian Armstrong
Brian is the co-founder & CEO of Coinbase, an open financial system and Bitcoin exchange for the world. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics, and a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from Rice University. He was also featured in the 2014 movie, “The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin”.
15. Andreas M. Antonopoulos
Andreas is the author of “Mastering Bitcoin” and “The Internet of Money”, seminal books about why bitcoin matters on a global scale. Antonopoulos is also a public speaker at bitcoin events, and is frequently called in as an expert witness in trials relating to the security and technical details of crypto-currencies.
16. Tony Gallippi
Tony is the co-founder and chairman of the online crypto payments firm BitPay – the world’s largest bitcoin payment processor. Gallippi speaks regularly to the media about bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, and in 2013, also spoke before the US Senate about bitcoin as a means for preventing credit card fraud.
17. Wong Joon Ian
Wong is a reporter covering tech, cryptocurrencies, urban studies and blockchains at Quartz. Before his time at Quartz, Joon was also a reporter at CoinDesk, and spent some time as a freelance journalist as well. He holds a Masters in Arts from University of London, and a BA in Journalism and Philosophy from NYU.
18. Tai Zen
Tai is a Senior Technical Analyst at Cryptocurrency.Market and the co-creator of the TaiFu™ 30 Cryptocurrency Market Index. Zen is a renowned authority on cryptocurrencies and frequently gives interviews on the topic to news outlets around the world. He is an active trader in Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other cryptocurrencies.
19. Sunny Ray
Ray is the co-founder of Unocoin, an India-based startup that aims to make it easy to securely buy, sell, and store bitcoin. He has been involved with cryptocurrencies since 2013, when he directed Business Development for Buttercoin, one of the earliest cryptocurrency trading firms.
20. Elizabeth Stark
Elizabeth is the founder of Lightning Labs, which develops Lightning, an open protocol layer for blockchain. She is also a fellow at Coin Center, a cryptocurrency policy institute. Stark is an advisor to numerous AI and blockchain startups, and previously taught at Stanford and Yale, and holds a law degree from Harvard.
21. Nicolas Cary
As the President and Co-Founder of Blockchain.com, Cary travels the world to connect with the bitcoin community and be an evangelist for the story of Blockchain. As an active philanthropist, Cary executed the world’s first University donation in Bitcoin. Cary is also an active investor in cryptocurrencies and blockchain.
22. Tim Draper
Tim Draper has been listed as #7 on the Forbes Midas List, and #98 on the 2014 Worth Magazine 100 Most Powerful People in Finance. Draper is the founder of DFJ Venture Capital, an advocate for blockchain technologies, and was an early investor in Bitcoin.
23. Chris DeRose
Chris is a bitcoin evangelist, public speaker, podcaster, and journalist. He is the lead organizer of the South Florida Bitcoin group, and a prolific YouTuber at his channel, Bitcoin Uncensored. He is also the Community Director at the Counterparty Foundation, and writes regularly for publications such as Bitcoin Magazine.
24. Willy Woo
Willy is a data-driven cryptocurrency analyst and bitcoin investor, and makes in-depth analysis on the cryptocurrency market on Twitter. He also runs a personal blog called Woobull. He writes regularly about cryptocurrency as an investment for publications like Forbes, CoinDesk, and BraveNewCoin. Woo also speaks regularly about bitcoin at conferences and events around the world.
25. Charles Hoskinson
Charles is the co-founder of Ethereum and is presently the CEO of Input Output, a Hong Kong-based blockchain research firm. He was also a founding member of the Cryptocurrency Research Group, which was established in 2013. Hoskison is a bitcoin evangelist, and writes about cryptocurrencies for numerous publications.
There you have it folks! The top 25 most influential people in the crypto world in 2018. Follow them on Twitter to learn more about the crypto market.
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