Binance CZ Gained $25 Billion

Barry Silbert Resigns | Infinex Perps Goes Live

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Happy Humpday 🐪. The crypto market remains above $1.75 trillion in market cap despite the supposed slower holiday seasons. Funding and OI also remain incredibly high. It’s looking like we need a flush sooner rather than later.

In Today's Email:

  • What Matters: CZ's wealth grew by $25B 📈 

  • Case Study: Silbert resigned from Grayscale 👋 

  • Governance & Features: Infinex goes live 📊 

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Narratives: DA, parallelized EVM, SVM. Everything infrastructure related is pumping as the recently generated wealth trickle down from one ecosystem (Solana) to another. ETH remains flat though lol.



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CZ's Wealth Grew by $25B in 2023

State of play: According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Binance founder Changpeng 'CZ' Zhao's wealth soared by approximately $25B in 2023, making him the 35th richest person in the world.

  • CZ’s estimated total net worth now stands at ~$36B.

  • CZ recently pleaded guilty to US criminal charges, resigned as CEO of Binance, and agreed to pay a fine of $50M.

  • Zhao's wealth has significantly dropped from its peak of ~$97B in early 2022.

Several other crypto executives saw their wealth increase in 2023 amid a market comeback:

  • Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong with ~$7.1B total net worth (+$5.6B).

  • Coinbase co-founder Fred Ehrsam with ~$2.5B total net worth.

  • Gemini co-founders Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss with ~$2.7B total net worth each.

  • DCG founder Barry Silbert with ~$2B total net worth.

  • Only CZ and Brian Armstrong are included in the top 500 list of the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Why it matters: CZ’s growth in total net worth is almost 6x of the $4.3B fines that Binance has to pay to the US authorities and the spot Bitcoin ETF is not even approved yet.

For builders and investors: Crypto is an extremely volatile space where price dictates sentiment/development, and vice-versa. The key is to tailor your capital (and human capital) to be able to survive both scenarios.


Barry Silbert Resignation from Grayscale

State of play: Barry Silbert and Mark Murphy of Digital Currency Group (DCG), the parent company of Grayscale, have resigned from Grayscale Investments' board of directors.

  • Their resignations from Grayscale's board will become effective on Jan. 1, 2024.

  • Silbert will be succeeded by Mark Shifke, the CFO of DCG.

  • Grayscale's board now comprises Shifke, Kummell, McGee, and Michael Sonnenshein, the CEO of Grayscale

Ram Ahluwalia said that Silbert's resignation is a Christmas gift for Michael Sonnenshein, the CEO of Grayscale. Here are the key takeaways from Ahluwalia’s tweet:

  • This is a decision from Barry Silbert to improve the odds of the GBTC conversion approval.

  • Silbert prefers hands-on control. The SEC shouldn't dictate Grayscale's governance but might informally suggest the strength of an application.

  • Michael Sonnenshein has emerged unscathed from the drama at the DCG mothership and Barry's resignation gives Grayscale greater autonomy.

What’s next: How Grayscale responds to the upcoming change in crypto market dynamics after the Bitcoin ETF approvals will affect the broader market significantly.

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Crypto VC Funding Plummeted by 68%

According to The Block, VC firms invested $10.7B in crypto and blockchain startups in 2023, a 68% drop from 2022's $33.3B.

  • More funding went to early-stage startups, while mid to late-stage deals decreased compared to last year.

  • NFT/gaming, infrastructure, and web3 deals remained dominant, while data, trading, and enterprise sectors saw fewer deals.

  • Crypto VC deals count in 2023 decreased to 1,819, a 32% drop from 2,671 in 2022.


Infinex Live on Mainnet

Infinex, the new perps exchange from Synthetix founder Kain Warwick is now live on Mainnet.

  • Infinex perps trading offers a DeFi experience with a fast, familiar Web2 UX. It is also self-custodial, trustless, and transparent.

  • Infinex is powered by Synthetix and Base.

  • On Dec. 16, Infinex introduced the Infinex Account, allowing users to create their account through social sign-in, and interact with Infinex.

Why it matters: Blockchain scalability and infrastructure growth have improved in the past few years, to the point that DEXs can slowly take substantial market share away from CEXs.

Other notable feature updates:

  • vfat launches Yield.

  • Gearbox V3 goes live.

  • Lumio launches testnet.

  • Frax FXS halving goes live.

  • ZKFair launches its mainnet.

  • Aori V1 launches on Arbitrum.

  • Renzo goes live on EigenLayer.

  • Ipor launches Stake Rate Swap (SRS).

  • Ondo launches USDY, OUSG on Solana.

  • EigenLayer raises the staking cap to 500K ETH.

  • Immutable launches its web3 gaming “Passport.”

  • Circle launches Euro-backed stablecoin EURC on Solana.


  • Metis eyes $360M in grant rewards.

  • Ikigai sold its FTX bankruptcy claim.

  • Thunder Terminal hacked for 86.5 ETH.

  • Binance CZ grew his wealth by $25 billion.

  • BarnBridge DAO settles with SEC for $1.7M.

  • Barry Silbert resigns as Grayscale Chairman.

  • Mt. Gox starts repaying some creditors via PayPal.

  • Paxos receives approval from the NY regulator to expand to Solana.

  • Japan proposes scrapping corporate tax on unrealized crypto gains.


  • Decentralised’s read on belonging.

  • Wu Blockchain’s read on stablecoins black market.

  • Arthur Hayes’ read on global macro and the Bitcoin ETF.

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Disclaimer: All the information presented in this publication and its affiliates is strictly for educational purposes only. It should not be construed or taken as financial, legal, investment, or any other form of advice.