Coinbase CEO Gave CNBC Anchor $1 In Bitcoin In 2015 — Here's How Much It's Worth Now

Cryptocurrency trading platform Coinbase Global (NASDAQ:COIN) is one of the top-performing stocks of the last year, boosted by a rising price of Bitcoin (CRYPTO: BTC) and demand for Bitcoin ETFs.

What started as a demonstration of the Coinbase platform to one journalist using a small amount of Bitcoin has unexpectedly yielded significant returns.

What Happened: The price of Bitcoin has soared in 2024, setting new all-time highs several times and passing $70,000.

Coinbase stock has benefited and so has anyone who bought Bitcoin in the past.

CNBC anchor Jon Fortt recently shared a snapshot of his Coinbase account balance, illustrating how a modest investment in Bitcoin has generated a substantial percentage return.

"I met with Brian Armstrong at The Creamery in San Francisco on 7/24/15. He wanted to show me how his Coinbase app worked, so he sent me $1 worth of $BTC. Here it is today," Fortt tweeted with the screenshot.

The screenshot shows the $1 in Bitcoin was worth $254.83 on Wednesday.

"I remember that meeting!" Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong tweeted, sharing Fortt's post.

Fellow X users had lots of questions for Fortt, mainly asking whether he bought more Bitcoin after meeting Armstrong.

"I didn't. But I decided to keep the $1 to track the progress of the story," Fortt told one user.

Another user queried whether the Bitcoin holdings belonged to Fortt personally or to CNBC’s parent company, Comcast, considering that it was acquired “as a result” of his job.

"They're welcome to it if they want it," Fortt replied.

Fortt also shared a LinkedIn post from 2021, the same year when Coinbase had its IPO, to reflect on his meeting with Armstrong.

"Someone suggested I meet this startup founder for coffee. I'd heard of Bitcoin, but hadn't taken it seriously," Fortt wrote. "My first impression of Armstrong: He was very serious."

Fortt said Armstrong told him Bitcoin was the future and was certain the cryptocurrency was going up in value.

"He told me he had been taking his entire salary in Bitcoin and wasn't cashing it out."  

Fortt mentioned that he is prohibited from owning stocks but has the option to possess cryptocurrency. However, he opted to refrain from doing so. In his LinkedIn post, Fortt shared the sizable return his $1 in Bitcoin had realized.

"The lesson: Don't underestimate an entrepreneur with conviction," he wrote.

Related Link: Coinbase CEO Has A Solution For Fixing National Debt: ‘You Can Buy Bitcoin..Save The US Long Term’

What's Next: Coinbase shares are up over 250% over the last year, and the stock is seen as a potential winner for the Bitcoin ETFs, serving as the custodian for the majority of the funds.

Surging retail interest in cryptocurrencies and meme coins could also increase activity on Coinbase in the current quarter.

For Fortt and Coinbase, Bitcoin could also continue to climb with many pointing to $100,000 as the next milestone.

Fortt's 0.003461 BTC would be worth $346.10 if Bitcoin reaches $100,000.

If Bitcoin reaches $1 million as predicted by Cathie Wood, the small $1 amount from Armstrong would be worth $3,461.

As for Fortt, the decision to not add to his Bitcoin position probably haunts him to this day. A $100 purchase of Bitcoin on the day of his meeting with Armstrong could have bought an additional 0.3457 BTC. That $100 would be worth $24,352.11 today.

Read Next: 10 Crypto Ideas From Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong: ‘Bear Markets Are For Building’

Photo: Shutterstock

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Posted In: CryptocurrencyBrian ArmstrongCNBCcryptocurrency trading platformsJon Fortt