The Demon And Crypto: A Look At Gene Simmons' Booming Cryptocurrency Portfolio

Simmons and his band are famous for their colourful shows from the 70s and 80s, which featured smoking guitars, levitating drum kits, fire breathing, shooting rockets, and pyrotechnics. In truth, marching to the beat of his drum has been the hallmark of Simmon’s near 50-year music career, and it seems this is the same trailblazing attitude he brings when making investment choices.

With 14 platinum albums under his belt and a further 30 gold albums to boot, Gene Simmons has seen it all and done it all, and there should be little that excites him. But recently, he has been making a fair bit of noise about his cryptocurrency collection, claiming to be the proud owner of 14 different digital assets.

How Simmons Got Started on his Crypto Adventure

The veteran rocker hinted at an interest in crypto back in 2017 when he declared that he would consider investing in Bitcoin if only to diversify his portfolio. But it was three years later, with the world deep in the throes of the Covid pandemic, that Simmons indeed jumped onto the crypto bandwagon.

The well-read musician credits his curious nature for getting him into cryptocurrency. In 2019, Kiss embarked on their much-heralded End of the Road World Tour, but they had to postpone most of their shows in 2020 due to prevailing covid restrictions.

Then, with a bit of free time in his hands, Gene Simmons claims that he closely studied Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous founder of Bitcoin and the digital asset economy, before finally deciding to put his hard-earned money where his heart was. “I did a little research about Satoshi and where he came from and what it was,” Simmons said in a February conversation with Dustin Plantholt, Bitcoin.com’s podcast host.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer also admitted that seeing other famous people like Elon Musk and the Winklevoss twins going to bat for crypto on social media made the industry even more attractive as an investment choice. A long chat with Gemini co-founder and leading Bitcoin proponent Tyler Winklevoss helped Simmons clear any doubts he might have had about crypto. But the Kiss bassist did not stop there; in a recent interview on the YouTube channel Altcoin Daily, Simmons spoke about hiring a lawyer and a crypto consultant out of Washington DC. Given the largely unregulated nature of crypto back then, these two were to help him understand the crypto culture and the legal ramifications of whatever investments he sought to make. He has not looked back ever since.

The Crypto Assets Simmons Holds

Gene’s first crypto purchase was a few million dollars’ worths of Bitcoin, back when it was valued at $10,000 a unit. His portfolio has grown to encompass 13 other digital assets in the intervening time, including stockpiles of Ethereum, Litecoin, Dogecoin, TRU, Binance Coin, Chainlink, and XRP. Simmons claims that his Bitcoin and Ethereum holdings, which make up the most significant percentage of his crypto portfolio, are almost equal in dollar value.

Earlier this year in February, Gene Simmons tweeted that he had bought $300,000 worth of Cardano (ADA). He termed the coin as something he believed in and whose value he believed was set to go up. Simmons’ also claimed that the $300,000 he spent on Cardano was the lowest amount he had ever forked out for any of his digital assets.

It is this affordability, compared to other tokens like Bitcoin and Ethereum, that drew Simmons so strongly to Cardano. ADA’s $70 billion valuation makes it the fifth-largest cryptocurrency by market cap. It is currently priced at $2.11, making it affordable to almost everyone.

Gene Simmons is bullish about crypto, and earlier in a CNBC interview in August, had predicted that Bitcoin prices would soar to over $55k.

“By the beginning of next year, we’ll be at $55,000 to $60,000. So I’m all in. I’m putting more in. When there was a big dip, and it went down to under $30,000 or something, I put in more,”

he said. True to the visionary’s prophetic words, Bitcoin is currently trading at just north of $63k.

The rockstar’s other assets have also been doing quite well. For instance, he bought Ethereum when a single unit traded at $900; the coin is now valued at $4,595. Cardano was going at $0.92 a pop when Simmons waded into those waters; currently, it is selling at over two dollars. The good times just won’t stop rolling for this rocker.

Accusations of Market Manipulation

However, there has been criticism of Gene Simmons, with observers claiming that the famous musician was a shill for the crypto industry. These sentiments stem from when the eccentric artist dubbed himself the god of Dogecoin, joining rapper and TV personality Snoop Dogg and Tesla CEO Elon Musk in pumping the value of the meme-inspired token. That little bit of concerted action pushed Dogecoin into the top ten most valuable cryptocurrencies by market cap, when its value jumped by 40% and breached the $10 billion thresholds in just 24 hours.

Gene Simmons carries tremendous influence in the crypto sphere with an enormous social media following, exceeding 950k on Twitter alone. And with an investment worth millions in Dogecoin, among others, it would hardly take a cynic to think that Simmons might use his social media reach to jockey crypto prices.

But Simmons has consistently said that his tweets on Bitcoin and other assorted crypto assets are not investment advice. “I’m not here to give you investment advice. Do your own research. I keep telling you guys,” he asserted.

Simmons’ Covid-Inspired Art Displayed at the Venetia

Apart from being a heavy metal legend, Gene Simmons is also a talented artist, drawing and painting secretly for the last 50 years. The free time afforded him by the covid pandemic allowed him to indulge in this other passion, and the resulting pieces were put on sale at the Venetian Animazing Gallery mid-October this year. The musician accepted cryptocurrency as payment for his artwork.

Just like his music career, which spans nearly half a century, Gene Simmons says he is in crypto for the long haul. In February, he tweeted that he was a HODLer and said he intended to keep his crypto assets locked for at least the next ten years. And while his sentiments on Cardano and other cheaper tokens are well-meaning, potential investors in the more expensive cryptos like Bitcoin and Ethereum should know that they can still invest in those tokens by buying fractions of them at relatively low prices.

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