Ripple Co-founder Chris Larsen Net Worth, Career, Personal Life

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Chris Larsen makes the list of very few earliest pioneers of cryptocurrencies. He is a strong believer of the potential of cryptocurrencies in solving the issues with the traditional financial system. Larsen entered the crypto industry in 2021 itself as a co-founder of Ripple Labs, along with Brad Garlinghouse.

Chris Larsen became the richest man in the entire crypto industry when XRP price reached an all-time high of $3.84. His other noteworthy accomplishments include E-Loan mortgage lender and Prosper marketplace. If you would like to find out more about Chris Larsen’s career journey, his current net worth, and personal life, keep reading!

Chris Larsen Biography

Full name : Chris Larsen

Age :  63 years

Height : 5.3 ft

Nationality : American

Spouse : Lyna Lam

Children : 2

Education : Stanford Graduate School of Business

Known for : E-Loan, Prosper Marketplace, Ripple

Profession : Angel Investor, Business Executive
Title : Co-founder and Chairman of Ripple Labs Inc.

Net Worth : $2.9 Billion

Educational Background of Chris Larsen

Chris Larsen was born in 1960 in San Francisco, California, USA. His mother was a freelance illustrator and his father was an aircraft mechanic at San Francisco International Airport. After completing high school education, Chris Larsen got a BS degree in international business and accounting from San Francisco State University in 1984. Before graduating with an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business in 1991, Larsen worked with Chevron, an American multinational energy company, as a financial auditor for a few years.

Chris Larsen’s Career Journey

after being fed up with the traditional mortgage lending industry, Chris Larsen and his former colleague Janina Pawlowski saw an opportunity to build an internet-enabled mortgage lending platform. That is how the pioneering mortgage lending platform, E-Loan has emerged, having Larsen and Pawlowski as co-founders. E-Loan garnered significant adoption as an early mover, providing access to mortgage loans without any brokers. It later expanded to offer home equity loans and car loans as well.

After facing some minor difficulties in the early years, E-Loan became a huge success and reached a $1 billion valuation in the early 2000. Under the guidance of Larsen, the company witnessed an eight-quarter profit streak and provided more than $18.9 billion in consumer loans by 2004. When Chris Larsen quit his role as the CEO in 2005 to focus on other business ventures, E-Loan was acquired by Banco Popular for $300 million.

Prosper Marketplace
The next endeavor of Chris Larsen is the Prosper Marketplace, which he co-founded along with John Witchel. The main purpose of the Prosper Marketplace is to provide a peer to peer lending and borrowing system for users. Lenders and borrowers used Dutch auction style to agree upon loan interest rates for the initial 3 years.

Prosper Marketplace also witnessed a considerable adoption from a diverse group of users, including college students, credit-card users, entrepreneurs, homeowners, etc. After facilitating more than $120 million worth of loans by 2008, the company was listed in the “Fast 50 List of most innovative companies of the year” by the Fast Company.

During the same year, the Prosper Marketplace faced regulatory challenges from the US SEC, which resulted in changing its business model. The company continued to grow and offer more and more peer to peer loans. It even received $74.5 million in funding from investors before Larsen resigned his position as the CEO in 2012.

OpenCoin and Ripple Labs
Chris Larsen’s track record of developing successful peer-to-peer lending platforms is in line with the decentralized nature of blockchain and cryptocurrencies. It didn’t take long for Larsen to enter the crypto industry and utilize its unique attributes to build his next company.

Larsen initially co-founded OpenCoin and started developing the Ripple network based on Ryan Fugger’s concept. His primary focus was to enable instant and direct payment transfer between two parties without any geographical limitations and middlemen, at significantly lower transaction fees. To facilitate a secure payment system, OpenCoin adopted a decentralized common ledger that is managed by independent validating servers. OpenCoin went on to create its own native digital currency XRP to enable money transfer at negligible fees.

OpenCoin rebranded to Ripple Labs Inc. in 2013 and garnered appreciation for its unique offerings and functionalities. Ripple became one of the 50 Smartest Companies by MIT Technology Review in 2014, and ranked 4 on Fast Company’s Top 10 Most Innovative Companies of 2015. Brad Gralinghouse joined Ripple Labs as CEO in 2015 when Larsen explained the concert of Ripple to him.

However, the growth of the company halted when the US SEC filed a lawsuit against Ripple, Chris Larsen, and Brad Garlinghouse alleging that they violated the securities laws in 2020. The firm recently got a partial win against the SEC when Judge Torres ruled that XRP is not a security when sold to retail investors on crypto exchanges. However, the XRP lawsuit is not yet over and has the next court hearing in 2024.

Chris Larsen Net Worth

Chris Larsen holds a net worth of around $2.9 billion as of November, 2023. He is not a popular influential figure in the crypto industry but also known as the richest crypto investor. As obvious, most of his wealth comes from his XRP holdings and his 17% stake in Ripple Labs Inc. The other portion of his wealth may include his stake in the previous companies and other investments.

When XRP reached a peak value of $3.84 in 2018, Chris Larsen briefly became the fifth richest person in the US, with a $50 billion net worth. After the US SEC filed a lawsuit against Ripple, XRP price plunged, which resulted in Chris Larsen’s net worth to decrease in 2020.

Personal Life of Chris Larseln

Chris Larsen is married to his wife, Lyna Lam and has 2 children. Larsen is also a public speaker and appears at various industry events. Another intriguing fact about Larsen is he also writes articles on banking systems and other technical topics.

The philanthropic actions of Larsen include the establishment of Chris Larsen Scholarship Fund at San Francisco State University. Larsen also serves as a board member of different organizations such as Credit Karma, Electronic Privacy Information Center, Portun and advisor to Silicon Valley Community Foundation’s policy committee.