In the crypto industry, some prominent investors have embraced the HODLing culture, steadily accumulating their Bitcoin holdings over the cryptocurrency's 15-year existence.
While blockchain technology is popular for decentralization, there are still some giant whales out there — individuals or organizations who own a significant amount in the vast sea of cryptocurrency.
Even if you are unfamiliar with the extensive world of cryptocurrencies, chances are you are familiar with Bitcoin, the apex cryptocurrency and the largest by market capitalization. Finbold provided data from different sources, including Arkham Intelligence and the Buy Bitcoin Worldwide website, about the top Bitcoin holders in the world.
- Satoshi Nakamoto (estimations): 750,000 to 1.1 million BTC
- Binance: 643,546 BTC
- Grayscale: 627,779 BTC
- US Government: 207,189 BTC
- Mt. Gox: 200,000 BTC
While these are the top 5 holders, there are additional noteworthy entities in the top 10, such as Bitfinex, the Chinese Government, MicroStrategy, Block.One, and Robinhood.
These names collectively possess a staggering 3,479,866 (3.48 million) BTC accounting for 16.5% of the maximum supply of 21 million BTC or 17.8% of the current circulating supply of 19.49 million BTC at the time of writing.
The Bitcoin Heavyweights: Identifying the Major Players
Bitcoin is the most well-known cryptocurrency and holds the highest market value. It is widely recognized even by those unfamiliar with cryptocurrencies. However, there are significant players in the Bitcoin community who hold a substantial amount of it.
One of the big mysteries is how much Bitcoin Satoshi Nakamoto has. Satoshi Nakamoto is the person or group that created Bitcoin, but the identity of Satoshi is still a mystery.
At present, we can only make rough guesses about how much Bitcoin they have. Some of these predictions come from the early days of Bitcoin mining. It's estimated that Satoshi mined about 22,000 blocks.
Binance, one of the largest Bitcoin whales, handles primarily others' Bitcoin and stores coins on a centralized exchange for trading.
Grayscale has a large amount of Bitcoin too. Most of it is set aside for the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC). Recently, they showed proof of how much they have on the blockchain through something called on-chain proofs, which Arkham disclosed.
Unsurprisingly, the United States Government has lots of Bitcoin. Most of which came from seized assets when they crack down on businesses involved in illegal activities like hacking, fraud, or money laundering.
Then there's Mt. Gox. They have a unique place in Bitcoin's history. A court in Tokyo has locked up their remaining Bitcoin because of the Mt. Gox case. These assets are supposed to be used to pay back the people who lost money in that case. But there are delays, and people wonder when they'll finally be allowed to sell those assets.
Bitcoin Market/ Price Analysis
Keeping an eye on the big players, known as crypto whales, is essential in the cryptocurrency market. These are individuals or organizations that hold vast amounts of a specific cryptocurrency. Their importance stems from the limited supply of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.
BTC has a total supply of 21 million, with around 19.5 million currently in circulation. This scarcity makes identifying those who own substantial amounts of Bitcoin essential. Crypto whales wield immense influence in the crypto markets because their actions can significantly affect cryptocurrency prices.
The reason for closely monitoring these whales is apparent. Their substantial holdings and trading activities provide valuable insights into potential price trends.
Unlike traditional financial markets, the crypto market has relatively low trading volume. Therefore, keeping tabs on whale activities becomes a valuable tool for predicting market direction. At the time of writing, Bitcoin's price is within the $26k range.