From burger flipper to billionaire: The story of CZ, Binance CEO

Highlights 

  • Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao is the world’s wealthiest crypto billionaire.
  • According to Bloomberg, Zhao's net worth is US$96 billion.
  • CZ is ranked 11th among the world's wealthiest people, ahead of Indian tycoon Mukesh Ambani.

There has been a monumental rise in the amount of wealth being created in the cryptocurrency world, which has churned out a decent number of billionaires by now. One such crypto billionaire who sprang to spotlight recently is Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao.

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Who is Changpeng Zhao?

Nicknamed as "CZ" in the cryptocurrency world, Changpeng Zhao is the world's richest crypto billionaire. From flipping burgers at McDonald's to establishing the world's largest cryptocurrency exchange, Zhao’s journey has been an inspirational one. Born in Jiangsu, China, Zhao did not have an easy childhood.

His father, a professor, was considered a pro-bourgeois intellectual and was temporarily deported shortly after CZ was born. CZ worked overnight shifts at a petrol station as a teen to help pay for the family's expenditures.

Zhao founded Binance in July 2017 and paved an easy way for crypto aficionados to trade.

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How much is Zhao worth?

Zhao recently joined the elite club of the world's top billionaires. The 44-year-old Chinese tech mogul's value has been assessed for the first time by Bloomberg.

According to Bloomberg, Zhao's net worth is US$96 billion. CZ is ranked 11th among the world's wealthiest people, ahead of Indian tycoon Mukesh Ambani, whose worth is US$92.9 billion as of 9  January 2022 (as per the Bloomberg Billionaires Index). Zhao's expected fortune is now on par with that of Oracle (ORCL) founder Larry Ellison's.

Furthermore, Bloomberg’s report places Zhao in the same league as Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page, Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, Microsoft founder Bill Gates, and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

Interestingly, Zhao's actual fortune might be way higher than US$96 billion as his own crypto assets, which include his company's own token, Binance Coin, and Bitcoin, are not included in the wealth estimate.

If Zhao’s crypto wealth is taken into account, his fortune is thought to be close to that of Bill Gates (net worth of US$135 billion) and Mark Zuckerberg (net worth of US$124 billion), who are the world's fourth and fifth men, respectively.

What led to Binance’s success?

Here are the factors behind Binance's meteoric rise.

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Final thoughts

Binance's success highlights the enormous money that can be gained in the unregulated crypto space.

Zhao's success story may also inspire others, who dream of minting millions and billions via crypto magic.

However, because of the risk and volatility involved in the crypto market, one should exercise caution when investing their hard-earned money.

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