Bloomberg Billionaires Index

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# 54 Changpeng Zhao $26.0B

Random fact: Worked at Bloomberg Tradebook between 2001 and 2005.


Zhao is the chief executive officer of Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency-exchange by trading volume. The company offers markets in more than 600 cryptocurrencies and has said it has over 120 million users. Zhao, who was born in China and raised in Canada, founded the company in 2017.

As of :
Last change -$1.33B ( -4.9%)
YTD change +$13.4B ( +106.8%)
Biggest asset Binance Holdings Ltd
Country / Region Canada
Age 46
Industry Finance
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Net Worth Summary

Private asset
Public asset
Misc. liabilities
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Zhao's fortune is derived from his controlling stake in Binance, a crypto exchange. Binance is the world's largest cryptocurrency-exchange by trading volume, according to its website, and had more than 120 million users at the end of 2022.

Binance's revenue of $12.6 billion is calculated using the average of the company's annual spot and derivative trading volumes as tracked by research sites and through Feb. 26, 2023, and the average of transaction fees disclosed on Binance's website, calculated separately for spot and derivative volumes. It's valued using the average enterprise value-to-sales multiple of publicly-traded peers Coinbase Global Inc, Galaxy Digital Holdings Ltd and Riot Platforms Inc. The valuation is discounted by 50% due to institutional, regulatory and related risks.

Zhao is credited with 90% of Binance based on his public statements and filings in regions where ownership is publicly disclosed.

He also owns Binance.US, a related US exchange, that was valued at $4.7 billion in a March 2022 fundraising round. He's calculated to own an 86% stake in the firm based on the firm's fundraising history. It's value is based on the fundraising round and adjusted according to the NYSE FactSet Global Blockchain Technologies Index. A 50% discount is applied due to institutional, regulatory and related risks.

The billionaire has said that he's also invested in Bitcoin and Binance Coin. Cryptocurrency held directly by the billionaire isn't included because the amount is unknown.

Hazel Watts, a spokesperson for Binance, said in January 2022 that valuation estimates for Binance were "incorrect and far off" without providing further details. The company didn't respond to a request for comment in February 2023.


Education: McGill University

Born in Jiangsu, China in 1977, Zhao's mother was a teacher and his father an academic. The family moved to Canada in the late 1980s after his father got a job at the University of British Columbia.

Zhao started coding at about 16 and later completed a computer science degree in Montreal at McGill University. An internship in Japan was followed by a stint at Bloomberg's Tradebook in New York starting in 2001.

He moved to Shanghai in 2005 to develop high-frequency trading software at Fusion Systems. An interest in cryptocurrency began in 2013 following a discussion at a poker game. He later downloaded the Bitcoin white paper and began learning about the technology.

After about a year at beginning in late 2013, Zhao founded a startup that provided systems and software to exchanges before starting Binance in 2017. By 2018, Binance was the biggest cryptocurrency exchange in the world.

  • 2001 Starts work at Bloomberg Tradebook.
  • 2005 Moves to Shanghai to join Fusion Systems.
  • 2015 Startup Bijie Tech is founded.
  • 2017 Binance is founded.

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