Bitcoin has come a long way from its meager beginning in 2009, when one bitcoin was worth a fraction of a penny. As its price and popularity grows, the decentralized digital currency is racking up a pretty note-worthy list of celebrity endorsers.
The Most Entrepreneurial Man in the World
Sir Richard Branson, the business investor and influencer best known for founding Virgin Group, has labeled the creator of Bitcoin as a genius. Although Branson predicts that a more successful unifying digital currency will come from the likes of Jack Dorsey, head of Square (which Branson invests in), Branson's Virgin Galactic space travel venture started accepting bitcoin for payments in November.
Crooning Over Cryptocurrency
Several musicians have started accepted the digital currency for their albums. Users can purchase hip hop artist 50 Cent's new album, Animal Ambition, and metal band Mastodon's Once More Around the Sun with bitcoin. Last year, Mel B Scary Spice from the Spice Girls announced she would accept bitcoin as payment for her new single.
Actors Applaud Digital Currencies Innovation
Ashton Kutcher, known as much for his technology investments as his acting roles, has put money into BitGo, a Bitcoin wallet service that provides added security through a multi-signature feature. Roseanne Barr and Drew Carey have both tweeted about Bitcoin. Carey said he tried to buy breakfast with bitcoins but was refused.
Politicians Enamored with Libertarian Bent
Famous libertarian Ron Paul has opined on Bitcoin several times, first saying the alternative currency could destroy the dollar and separately saying that he doesn't see it as "true money." Max Keiser, a financial broadcaster, stands behind Bitcoin and recently created an alternative digital currency called Maxcoin. And the notorious political talking head, Glenn Beck, often discusses Bitcoin on his TV program, The Blaze.
Bitcoin Gets Props from Payments Industry Elites
In April last year, David Marcus, PayPal's president at the time, told Bloomberg that he likes Bitcoin and could see it as a funding option for PayPal. John Donahoe, CEO of eBay (which owns PayPal), later told CNBC that "at PayPal we're going to have to integrate digital currencies in our wallet." EBay already permits users of its marketplace in the U.K. and the U.S. to sell Bitcoin and other alternative cryptocurrencies.