- Rain Lõhmus, founder of LHV Bank, has 250,000 Ethereum worth $470 million locked due to a lost private key.
- Despite the potential fortune, Lõhmus has not pursued recovery aggressively but is open to sharing the wealth with anyone who can unlock it.
In a startling disclosure to Estonian media, Rain Lõhmus, the founder of the Baltic financial pioneer LHV Bank, revealed his ownership of a substantial Ethereum trove, amounting to a staggering 250,000 coins. Acquired during Ethereum’s initial coin offering (ICO), this digital asset cache has soared in value to an astronomical $470 million. Yet, an insurmountable hurdle stands before Lõhmus: the private keys to this fortune are nowhere to be found.
A Digital Fort Knox Without a Key
The saga of Lõhmus’s locked Ethereum came into the spotlight following Coinbase director Conor Grogan’s investigation, which unearthed an Ethereum wallet brimming with ETH since the early days of the blockchain, yet lying dormant. An update on a social platform by Grogan on November 6 connected Lõhmus to the untouched Ethereum, solving a long-standing crypto mystery.
One mystery solved: This address (which now holds $450M of crypto) belongs to Rain Lohmus, founder of LHV Bank
Unfortunately he lost his keys and can't access these 100s of millions. If you can help him recover them somehow, he's willing to split them with you https://t.co/wYLAU9gKzb pic.twitter.com/0A1nIjFSyn
— Conor (@jconorgrogan) November 6, 2023
Lõhmus, in an excerpt from an ERR News report on a prior radio interview, conveyed his dilemma with a touch of resignation. Despite the enormity of the locked funds, he admitted to minimal efforts in reclaiming access, albeit with a willingness to reward any successful digital locksmith handsomely.
“It’s very common for me to lose passwords,”
Lõhmus confessed, recognizing this vulnerability as a glaring “weak point” in blockchain systems. The irony of this situation is that his initial investment was a mere $75,000, with Ethereum’s launch price hovering around 30 cents.
A Stunning, Yet Inaccessible Gain
Lõhmus’s digital wallet, a veritable trove that would be the envy of any crypto investor, represents a monumental 628,757% appreciation from its initial value. And while his Ethereum hoard’s worth may have seen higher peaks — once hitting nearly $1.22 billion during Ether’s zenith in November 2021 — the current valuation remains a hefty sum.
To add to the potential windfall, Grogan noted that the wallet had also accrued $6.5 million in airdrops, further inflating its worth.
As Lõhmus contemplates the inaccessible digital wealth amassed, his situation underscores the essential balance between the security and recoverability of assets within blockchain technology. His public appeal for assistance, coupled with a promise to share the bounty, may yet stir crypto enthusiasts and experts to embark on a quest to unlock this modern-day digital vault.