It’s a dirty secret in the media industry that “best of” lists are popular, but also, in most cases, totally subjective.It’s not hard to sit around with a few work buddies to come up with some names, and then present it to the world as an authoritative ranking—and pick up some clicks in the process.Fortune lists aren’t like that—and the inaugural Fortune Crypto 40 definitely isn’t like that.When we set out, the plan was to replicate the Fortune 500 —our flagship list that ranks the biggest U.S.companies by revenue.It quickly became clear that this would be impractical, since few big players in crypto are public companies and, of those that are, few break out their crypto-specific revenue.
We also discovered that it’s not viable to compare the crypto achievements of Fidelity (which ranks No.
4 in the TradFi category) to Chainalysis ( No.1 , Data) to a decentralized platform like Curve ( No.
5 , DeFi).And so we set out to create distinct categories that would permit apples-to-apples comparisons, and a methodology for each.Hundreds of hours later, the list is now live, and I’m proud to say it’s the first of its kind: an authoritative ranking of crypto excellence based on empirical data (developer activity, fundraising, TVL, and so on as the category may dictate) and in some cases, reputation, as informed by a survey of over 200 finance and crypto executives.In some cases, this resulted in predictable outcomes—few people will be surprised to see Uniswap ( No.
1 , DeFi) and OpenSea ( No.1 , NFTs) leading their respective categories—but also some notable omissions.
Ripple and MasterCard got edged out, while financial troubles at other big players like DCG and Gemini resulted in reputational hits that kept them off this year’s list.There are also some controversial names on the list, most notably Binance ( No.2 , CeFi), which fared poorly in the survey but whose other metrics were dominating, as well as JPMorgan Chase ( No.3 , TradFi), whose CEO professes a hatred of crypto but has also overseen some truly innovative blockchain projects.The Fortune Crypto 40 also recognizes back-end companies like Alchemy ( No.4 , Infrastructure) that lack sizzle but that have quietly become indispensable to the industry, as well as entities such as Polygon Labs ( No.3 , Protocols) that support the blockchains that are the core of crypto.
More broadly, the list serves to recognize firms that are likely to be here for decades to come, and to hold up good actors in the crypto industry who—contrary to popular perception—outnumber the charlatans and scoundrels.We hope you can find time to review the whole list , and like us, learn more about who is really leading the way.Finally, the female Panamanian artist who goes by Ix Shells dropped an NFT version of the gorgeous blockchain-themed cover she designed for this month’s issue of Fortune magazine .
If you want to own a piece of history—and support her and the crypto industry in the process—you can buy one for 0.1 ETH until the 24-hour sale ends at 1 p.m.
EDT today.Jeff John Roberts [email protected] @jeffjohnroberts In the wake of the collapse of Signature and Silvergate, Binance.US has been relying on a middleman, Prime Trust LLC, to hold customer cash deposits ( WSJ )A CFTC lawsuit labeling tokens as commodities underscores an ongoing turf war with the SEC , where one official described a strategy of “jurisdictional maximalization” ( Wired )Ethereum’s Shanghai update, which will likely see owners cash out billions worth of staked ETH, goes live this week—what you need to know ( Fortune )Dogecoin is mostly back to where it was before Elon Musk caused the price to spike with a short-lived move to make the doggie Twitter’s new logo ( Barron’s ) The first major report from FTX ‘s caretaker CEO reveals a lack of accounting, including a directive to employees to “come up with some numbers? Idk.” ( Coindesk )A classic Fortune cover with an NFT twist This is the web version of Fortune Crypto, a daily newsletter.Sign up here to get it delivered free to your inbox..