Why is crypto’s richest person investing $200m into Forbes?

Crypto’s richest person — Changpeng Zhao ($96B) — will partly own one of America’s top business publishers.

Forbes is a 104-year-old magazine and publishing brand.

Why is crypto’s richest person investing $200m into Forbes?

It’s widely known for its Billionaires list (and also a source of endless jokes for its 30 under 30 list).

Well, one of those billionaires just invested $200m into the brand.

Meet Changpeng Zhao (AKA CZ)

He is the founder and CEO of crypto exchange Binance and — with a net worth of at least $96B — is the richest person in cryptoland, per CNBC.

Binance will put up the $200m as part of a financing deal to take Forbes public via a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC).

In addition to the aforementioned lists, Forbes says its audience is 150m, including a model that it pioneered: a “contributor network” of writers under its brand.

The Forbes SPAC…

… put the company’s value at $620m as recently as December. But markets have since cooled down. With CZ’s wealth, the Forbes brand — which also does ecommerce and licensing deals — may not have to be a big moneymaker.

The move is comparable to other big-dollar deals by crypto exchanges to raise mass awareness:

  • March 2021: FTX paid $135m to name the arena where the Miami Heat play
  • November 2021: Crypto.com paid $700m to name the arena where the LA Lakers play

It’s not just the NBA having fun: These crypto exchanges (including Coinbase) will spend millions on Super Bowl ads this Sunday.

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