Bitcoins, the digital currency, that seven years ago barely anyone had heard of. Today, they are worth a fortune.
In 2010, a developer bought two pizzas for 10,000 Bitcoins. That's what? £20 max. Today, those 10,000 coins would be worth $20m (£15.4m).
The prices have sky-rocketed for Bitcoins, with each one now worth around £1,638 (their record high was reached Monday morning at £1,682).
A year ago they were worth £341, a major deflation on what they were worth back in 2013 (£837). Since then, their value has just increased hour on hour.
Charles Hayter, founder of CryptoCompare, said: "The Japanese have caught the Bitcoin bug and inefficiencies across markets are being exposed.
"Irrational exuberance is taking hold as the Japanese stumble over each other to enter the Bitcoin market and drag up international prices."
10 facts about Bitcoins
- No one single entity controls the currency - there are no banks.
- There's a limited number of Bitcoins - 21,000,000 to be precise.
- Bitcoins have no inherent or set value.
- You can see all transactions - the openness installs trust and security.
- You can mine Bitcoins - a bit like solving mathematical problems to verify transactions.
- You cannot reverse a transaction or be forced to pay - once you've paid, you've paid.
- You can send money with little to no fees - no commission fees.
- Bitcoins are held in digital wallets - a bit like online banking.
- Losing a wallet means those Bitcoins are lost forever.
- You can actually buy things with Bitcoins - and plenty of places accept Bitcoin payment.
The pizza transaction, made at Papa John's by Laszlo Hanyecz, was believed to be the first 'real' transaction by Bitcoins.
He wrote on the Bitcoin Talk Forum: "I'll pay 10,000 bitcoins for a couple of pizzas, like maybe 2 large ones so I have some left over for the next day
"You can make the pizza yourself and bring it to my house or order it for me from a delivery place, but what I'm aiming for is getting food delivered in exchange for bitcoins where I don't have to order or prepare it myself."
A British user agreed, paying £19 for the two pizzas when the Bitcoins were worth about £30. The transaction became known among users as 'Bitcoin Pizza Day'.
Hanyecz told the New York Times: "It wasn't like Bitcoins had any value back then, so the idea of trading them for a pizza was incredibly cool. No one knew it was going to get so big."
Featured Image Credit: PA