Ethereum is the second largest cryptocurrency in the world with nearly twice the market capitalization of the next largest token, USDT. Even though its price is at its lowest level since January 2021, it continues to grow in popularity. The number of Ethereum wallets continues to grow steadily and has just passed the 200 million mark. That number doesn’t even include the many investors holding Ethereum on centralized exchanges like Coinbase Global Inc. (NASDAQ: COIN) or Binance.
Much of this growing adoption is attributable to celebrities buying and publicly discussing Ethereum. Some of the most influential have been Snoop Dogg, Paris Hilton, Jay-Z, Elon Musk, Mark Cuban and Reese Witherspoon.
Calvin Broadus Jr. (AKA Snoop Dogg) is an iconic rapper famous for his near-constant gangster rap and cannabis-smoking classics such as “Drop It Like It’s Hot” and his feature on Dr. Dre’s hit, “The Next Episode”. He is also a prolific entrepreneur, investor, and businessman with a cannabis-focused venture capital fund called Casa Verde.
Snoop was one of the first celebrities and rappers in the NFT space. He released a few small NFT collections on the Crypto.com NFT platform last summer. It still seems dedicated to NFTs and has dropped several smaller NFT collections since then. These led to the launch of his collection of 10,000 metaverse-ready generative Snoop Dogg NFTs, The Doggies. We don’t know much about the makeup of his wallet other than he has Ethereum and a bunch of NFTs.
Snoop may also have a hand in one of the biggest Twitter influencer accounts in NFTs, Cozomo de’ Medici. He claimed the account was his in a Tweet late last year, but recent evidence cast that into doubt. Medici tweeted a photo of him and Jason Derulo with their CryptoPunk NFTs covering their faces a few weeks before Snoop’s announcement. Not only does Medici appear to be much shorter than Snoop, he also looks like a white man.
Snoop may not be Medici, but he still had a resounding impact on the entire crypto ecosystem. He brought tons of new eyes just by chatting about what he was doing on his Twitter to his millions of followers. He is also excited about the future of the industry and said, “I’m excited about it, you dig?” to Vanity Fair when asked about the outlook for the NFT market.
Paris Hilton is an American media personality, flashy socialite, businesswoman, model, and actress. She is the great-granddaughter of the founder of the massif Hilton Hotels Corp. (NYSE: HLT), which was sold by the family for $26 billion in 2007. Paris Hilton didn’t make much out of it because her grandfather gave almost all of his fortune to charity.
Hilton had no reason to worry about her financial situation, however, as her fragrance line became the world’s second largest by a celebrity. She has since turned to a perhaps more lucrative scene, cryptos and more specifically NFTs. Hilton has been a die-hard fan of crypto, NFTs, and the Metaverse longer than almost any other celebrity.
Hilton’s ability to get in early and turn a profit is evident in its crypto and NFT endeavors. She let slip that she bought Bitcoin and Ethereum in 2016, when BTC was worth around $1,000 and ETH barely traded for $10. It’s unclear who she owns or if she owns other altcoins, but she’s probably deep in the green.
She also got into NFTs early on. She released her first NFT on April 17, 2021, a week before the release of Bored Ape Yacht Club. The 1/1 coin sold for the crazy (at the time) sum of $1.1 million. Continuing the early adoption model, she launched her own metaverse called Paris World in the popular Roblox Corp. (NYSE: RBLX) game in October of last year.
Hilton said in a recent interview that “NFTs have literally taken over my mind and soul” and “I’ve never been so excited about anything in my life because I really see this as the future.” This interview was about his soon to be incredibly successful NFT mint (over $600,000 in revenue), but so take his praise with a (big) grain of salt. Hilton almost certainly benefits from her connection to crypto, but her support has been invaluable.
Shawn Carter (AKA Jay-Z) is a legendary 21 Grammy Award-winning rapper, record executive, investor, and media owner. His long and rich career has influenced hip hop and rap more than anyone. Jay-Z has amassed a huge fortune, second only to Kanye West. One of the common themes he raps about is teaching financial literacy to fight inequality. Although he has spoken about several different paths to financial freedom in the past, he has recently focused on cryptocurrencies and NFTs. It has not been released how much money he has in cryptos or even which ones he owns except Bitcoin and Ethereum.
The rapper is focusing on a new blockchain and financial literacy education program called Bitcoin Academy. The free course will be available to residents of Marcy Houses in Brooklyn NYC, where he grew up. He clearly cares about raising people as much as making money for himself.
Jay-Z, like Snoop Dogg and Paris Hilton, was one of the first celebrities to delve into NFTs. He bought a CryptoPunk NFT in April 2021 and made it his profile picture on Twitter two months later. This decision was a significant catalyst for the NFT market as a whole. It brought a deluge of publicity and set a precedent for other celebrities to follow by bringing even more media coverage.
Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA), SpaceX, Neuralink and the Boring Company, and the world’s richest man, is one of the biggest celebrity advocates for crypto. Musk started talking about his favorite cryptocurrency, the silly (and essentially useless) Dogecoin, in 2019. His obsession with memes and silly humor was a perfect match for the Doge community. He ran with it and helped it reach a market cap of around $75 billion with countless dog memes.
He is currently embroiled in a massive lawsuit that alleges he essentially ran a pyramid scheme around Dogecoin. The lawsuit seeks $258 billion in damages (much more than his already absurdly high net worth of around $210 billion). Despite the lawsuit, Musk said on Twitter that he would “continue to support” DOGE and would “even buy the dip.”
Musk has also signaled his support for Bitcoin and Ethereum over the past year and appears to own at least some of each. He asked Tesla to buy $1.5 billion worth of Bitcoin (which is now worth much less). Musk is well known for his aversion to abusive centralized power and censorship. It would be surprising if he did not actively invest in and support cryptocurrencies. Hopefully for crypto investors, it won’t stop anytime soon.
Mark Cuban is a billionaire investor, entrepreneur, and TV personality with a net worth of over $4.5 billion. Most of his fame (and many of his investments) came from his appearance on the hit investment and entrepreneurship show, Shark Tank. He also owns the Dallas Mavericks NBA team.
The next time you see a crypto or NFT-related company getting a funding round, check out the list of investors. Chances are Mark Cuban is near the top. Some of his best blockchain-related investments are in OpenSea, Polygon, and Arbitrum. It also has a diverse portfolio of cryptocurrencies including BTC, ETH, APE, and ENS. Cuban is perhaps the most actively involved celebrity on this list due to his extensive investments in smaller crypto companies.
Reese Witherspoon is a world-renowned businesswoman and actress known for her performances in Legally Blonde, American Psycho, Monsters vs. Aliens and many more movies and TV shows. She sold her media company Hello Sunshine, which helped develop shows like The Morning Show and Big Little Lies, for a staggering $900 million last year.
Witherspoon is a relatively new addition to the pantheon of celebrities promoting crypto and NFTs, but still passionate. She owns Ethereum and some NFTs, but the composition of her crypto wallet is not public. Her goal in Web3 seems to be to empower women in crypto and bring more women into the space. She wants to break the toxic “boys club” culture that often hangs over the crypto space. She thinks there is a lot of money to be made with NFTs and crypto and wants women to ride the wave too. She has helped both increase adoption and improve the culture around Web3 by welcoming more women into the space.
Cryptocurrency price movements
The cryptocurrency market is still in the midst of a painful bear market along with all other traditional markets. Massive cryptocurrency funds and platforms facing insolvency and liquidation accelerated the collapse. Unfortunately, a V-shaped recovery does not seem likely this time. However, each time the crypto crashes, the market eventually recovers and reaches new all-time highs.
Will Ethereum adoption decline now?
Ethereum is probably going nowhere. The crypto hype cycle is once again at its (hopefully) low point. The market has crashed many times before, and each time it has come back stronger. The number of wallets holding Ethereum continues to grow despite the correction, and that likely won’t stop anytime soon.