In March 2021, after investing tens of millions of dollars in LUNA cryptocurrency, billionaire Mike Novogratz told his Twitter followers that he would get a LUNA tattoo if its price reached $100.
At the time, LUNA was trading just under $20, but within nine months the price target was met. The Galaxy Digital CEO kept his promise and tweeted a picture of a howling wolf tattoo covering the upper half of his left arm.
“I’m officially a maniac!!” he tweeted, referring to the name cryptocurrency advocates call themselves.
LUNA eventually peaked near $120 before the collapse of its sister cryptocurrency TerraUSD (UST) caused it to plummet to just a ten-thousandth of a cent.
Dubbed the “Holy Grail of cryptocurrencies” by its developers, LUNA lost more than 99 percent of its value practically overnight. According to the Bloomberg Billionaire’s Index, Mr Novogratz’s net worth has plummeted from $8.5 billion to $2.5 billion.
The unprecedented capitulation wiped more than $40 billion from the market cap and left some investors lamenting the loss of their life savings.
It also sparked criticism against those who promoted the crypto project and drew mockery of Mr. Novogratz’s tattoo.
“The worst tattoo in history just got worse,” one Twitter user wrote wrote.
Other tweeted: “Some tattoos don’t age well.”
The tattoo wasn’t Mr Novogratz’s first crypto tattoo, having previously painted a Bitcoin logo on his body, and is part of a recent trend.
The booming crypto market during most of 2021, which included record-breaking price rallies for Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH), saw a surge in interest in crypto-related tattoos.
Recent research by comparison platform Crypto Head found that searches for terms like “bitcoin tattoo” and “crypto tattoo” increased by 222 percent over the past year.
On Wednesday, Mr. Novogratz released an open letter containing his first public comments on the cryptocurrency’s demise.
“Things always look clearer in hindsight,” he wrote. “My tattoo will be a constant reminder that risk investing requires humility.”
Mr. Novogratz, who told Business Insider last year that 85 percent of his wealth was tied up in cryptocurrency, didn’t provide specific details on how much he or Galaxy Digital lost as a result of the collapse, but did reveal that his firm “taken profits along the way.” “.
It has been speculated that many of the so-called “whales” that held large holdings of LUNA and UST were able to siphon off funds from the reserves stored by the Luna Foundation Guard, which oversees the two cryptocurrencies. However, everyday retail investors have seen their holdings evaporate.
“Reading the stories of retail investors who have lost their savings on an investment is heartbreaking,” wrote Mr. Novogratz. “It is important that less experienced market participants only risk what they are willing to lose.”
He concluded by claiming that Galaxy Digital is “in a strong capital and liquidity position” and “well positioned for long-term growth.”