The fame and fortune of the Winklevoss Twins in the world of cryptocurrency are beyond remarkable. They’ve become billionaires because of Bitcoin. But, their story remains an inspiration for students, aspirants, and risk-takers.
Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss came to fame as rowers. Their first competition was in the 2007 Pan American Games, where the Winklevoss Twins participated.
They won silver in that competition. Later on, the Winklevii participated in the 2008 Beijing Olympics as part of the United States Olympic Team. The rowing team lost in the first heat, but they were able to reclaim position in the repechage.
And finally, the team won in the semifinals and reached the finals. They placed sixth out of the fourteen contenders in the Olympics.
First Encounter with Zuckerberg
Back at Harvard, the twins had thought of the idea of a “social network.” With the help of Divya Narenda, they formulated the plan in making their idea of a social network into a viable project.
But since they were students of business, they didn’t have the coding expertise to put their idea into action. Thanks to Sanjay Mavinkurve, Joe Jackson, and Victor Gao, the idea of a “social network” came to life.
They called it “The Harvard Connection.” Their plan didn’t stop. They wanted to expand to other universities. Gao left the team for Google, and Mark Zuckerberg replaced him.
The twins saw potential in Zuckerberg. But later on, Zuckerberg went behind their back.
The Legal Battles
Zuckerberg left the twins in the air. He wouldn’t see the twins personally. They mostly communicated through e-mail. What the Winklevii didn’t know is that Zuckerberg is creating something far more explosive.
In 2004, Zuckerberg and Eduardo Saverin launched TheFacebook.com with Saverin as the financier of the Zuckerberg’s project. The legal battles started here. The Winklevii didn’t waste time in suing Zuckerberg for stealing their idea.
In the end, the twins received a hefty settlement of $65 million, both cash and stocks from Facebook. Harvard Connection became “ConnectU” later on.
Rise to Bitcoin Billionaires
After their win over Zuckerberg, they invested $11 million into Bitcoin. Nobody in Silicon Valley wants its investment. They acquired 120,000 bitcoins with a price of more or less $10 per coin. Many investors laughed at them for putting their money in a volatile investment.
But, their investment doubled and tripled as their cryptocurrency net worth reached almost a billion. The twins indeed knew what they’re doing.
Later on, the twins invested in Gemini Exchange. It is an exchange platform for people who would want to invest in Bitcoin. Gemini is now known as a trusted exchange for crypto-investors.
The Winklevoss twins’ risk appetite is extreme. They’ve invested in a highly-volatile investment but ended up becoming billionaires. As Tyler Winklevoss said, “live by the sword and die by the sword.” The twins are indeed inspirations for many to take risks to achieve success. A finance principle would say, “the higher the risk, the higher the return.”