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The Bitcoin Boy: 16-Year-Old Prodigy Erik Finman

Bitcoin Boy 16 Year Old Prodigy Erik Finman NYMag


The Finman brothers are close and also extremely competitive with each other. When Scott, in early 2013, told Erik about the digital currency bitcoin, and said he’d bought 50 of them, Erik decided to spend the $1,000 he’d just received from his grandmother to buy a hundred. A year later, Ross gave him a book, Without Their Permissionby Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian. In Erik’s whole life, prior to this, he had read only a single book voluntarily (Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs biography), but he devoured Ohanian’s book, which articulates the power of the internet to let anyone — like, say, a 15-year-old mediocre student in rural Idaho — become an entrepreneur. Erik was desperate to meet Ohanian, who, as it happened, was raffling “office hours” for charity. For $8,500, Ohanian promised waffles and a Brooklyn Nets game. Erik asked if his parents would pay the fee for him, but they felt it was too much money and that Ohanian was a fad. So they said no. Erik was undeterred. When he read that the price of a bitcoin had soared to $1,200, he decided to sell his for $100,000, and got his evening with Ohanian. “The whole time I had to check myself and remind myself I was talking to a teenager,” Ohanian says. “He’s a very driven young man, far more driven than when I was at his age.”

Stashed in: Young Americans, Reddit!, Bitcoin, Bitcoin, Phenoms, Extraordinary People, @alexisohanian

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He bought a hundred Bitcoins for $1000? Genius!

He sold at $1200 a Bitcoin? Super genius!

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