Bitcoin was treading above the $15,000 (£11,059) mark on Wednesday, spurred by a press report according to which US venture capital firm Founders Fund had placed a major bet on the volatile cryptocurrency.
Citing people familiar with the matter, The Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday that Founders Fund – the venture capital firm co-founded by early Facebook investor Peter Thiel – had bought between $15m to $20m worth of the currency which is now worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
The price of the digital currency rose by more than 13 per cent to hit $15,393 on Wednesday morning London time after the report, according to news site CoinDesk’s Bitcoin Price Index.
The Journal reported that the bitcoin investments had been spread across several of the firm’s most recently launched funds, including one that was launched in mid-2017.
However, it did not provide details of when the investments were made or if Founders Fund had sold any of its cryptocurrency assets.
Bitcoin has developed from being a niche investment to becoming a household term in recent months, thanks largely to its surge in value since the start of 2017, when it was trading around $1,000.
It hit a record high of just below $20,000 in December last year before retreating to $12,000 within days.
Its value has been undulating ever since and was trading below $13,000 earlier this week.
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Billionaire tech-investor Mr Thiel, who co-founded PayPal, has courted controversy with his support for US President Donald Trump.
Speaking with Fox Business Network in October, he said that while he was sceptical of most cryptocurrencies, bitcoin is “very underestimated”.
“It’s like a reserve form of money. It’s like gold and it’s just a store of value. You don’t actually need to use it to make payment,” he said at the time.
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