Bitcoin Billionaires: Who are the Largest BTC Holders?

By Anush Jafer
9 Min Read

Bitcoin (BTC) has transformed the way individuals and society at large transfer value. Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin, envisioned it as a more democratic and transparent alternative to fiat currencies.

Bitcoin ownership is widespread, but it is not evenly distributed. Among the millions who have purchased Bitcoin, a few wallets stand out for their large Bitcoin holdings. Satoshi is often cited as the largest Bitcoin hodler, while other players like early adopters, public companies, private entities, and even governments hold a substantial amount of Bitcoin. 

Bitcoin uses blockchain technology to facilitate transactions and several factors collectively contribute to BTC’s value. This includes scarcity, transparency, counterfeit resistance, divisibility, durability, and portability. Since its inception in 2009, in the aftermath of the financial crisis, BTC’s thesis as a store of value has grown rapidly.

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addresses with balance

The growing adoption is evidenced by the steady rise in the number of wallets holding Bitcoin. According to the on-chain analysis website, LookIntoBitcoin, the number of wallets holding at least 1 BTC is at an all-time high, nearing almost a million wallets. 

Largest Bitcoin Wallets

Transparency and verifiability are central tenets of Bitcoin. Therefore, a novel feature of BTC is its ability to showcase all transactions to have ever taken place on its network. As it is powered by blockchain technology, anyone with an internet connection can view transactional information, including specific wallet balances, using online platforms like blockchain explorers.

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Currently, of the max supply of 21 million, there is a circulating supply of over 19.5 million BTC. Wallets with a sizable BTC balance of 1000 or more are often referred to as whales. By using online resources like BitInfoCharts, we are able to clearly view which wallets hold the most amount of BTC while understanding the overall distribution.

However, in line with Satoshi’s identity, pseudonymity is a fundamental part of the BTC network. In other words, we can track wallets, but putting a name behind each wallet address is impossible unless made public by the holder. 

Bit Info Charts

At the time of this writing, there are currently five wallets with a balance between 100,000 to 1 million BTC. These five wallets collectively account for 4.2 % of the total circulating supply. Out of these five wallets, four of them are known to be held by two crypto exchanges, namely, Binance and Bitfinex. 

The Largest Bitcoin Holder

Unlike the other individuals or entities mentioned on this list, the real identity of the largest BTC holder remains a mystery. It is widely believed that the pseudonymous creator, Satoshi Nakamoto, holds the largest number of Bitcoins. While speculation abounds on whether Satoshi is/was an individual or an entity, research has unearthed that Satoshi mined over 22,000 blocks and received 1.1 million BTC as cumulative block rewards. 

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At the time of this writing, this amount is worth over $31 billion. Furthermore, this accounts for around 5% of the total supply of BTC that can ever be created. However, it must be noted that since Satoshi used multiple wallets, the exact amount held by the creator is difficult to track. Nevertheless, experts agree that Satoshi represents the largest Bitcoin whale. 

Institutional Investors

Apart from individual early adopters, many entities ranging from investment firms to public and private companies have jumped onto the BTC bandwagon. Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) like Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) owns approximately 635,236 BTC. This equates to a little over 3% of the total supply. Other notable institutional whales include: 

  • Microstrategy (140,000 BTC), the publicly traded company with the largest number of BTC on its balance sheet. 
  • Marathon Digital Holdings (12,232 BTC)
  • Tesla (12,232 BTC) 
  •  Block formerly known as Square (8,027 BTC)
  • Coinbase (4,488 BTC)

In total, currently, there are 40 public companies that own BTC. When added all together, these companies own over 216,000 BTC which equates to over 1% of the supply. The complete list of public companies holding BTC can be viewed here.

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When taking a look at the largest BTC holders among private companies, these firms hold over 174,000 BTC or 0.8% of Bitcoin’s supply. The largest private institution holding BTC is Block. one with 164,000 BTC. 

Governments and Countries 

A large portion of BTC’s supply lies in the hands of several governments. This might come as a surprise given the regulatory ambiguity surrounding the crypto sector in many countries. 

Most notably, the United States has the title of the largest BTC holder among any nation or government. Research shows that the United States has accumulated 205,000 BTC which were confiscated during criminal investigations over the now-defunct silk road. That being said, there are reports of Bulgaria owning 213,000 BTC which were seized from a criminal group in 2017. It remains unclear whether the nation still holds the asset. 

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Countries like El Salvador, on the other hand, have embraced Bitcoin as a legal tender and accumulate it routinely. As of April 2023, El Salvador is said to hold 2,381 BTC in its treasury. Other countries known to own the asset include Ukraine (46,351 BTC) and Georgia (66 BTC). 


The data presented here might seem like we are late to the party, especially for people just entering the cryptosphere. This is probably the furthest from the truth. Through the numerous crypto exchanges, gradually accumulating your own stash of BTC is easier than ever. It is still a nascent asset class with adoption increasing despite bearish macroeconomic uncertainties. Furthermore, on-chain data, as seen below, suggests that people are willing to hold the asset for the long haul. 

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Irrespective of what people think of Bitcoin’s thesis or as an investment, the decline in supply coupled with increased demand sets a bullish tone for the asset.