Oslo native Kristoffer Koch invested 150 kroner (US$26.60) in 5,000 bitcoins in 2009, after learning of their existence while writing a thesis on encryption. After being teased by his girlfriend over the frivolous purchase, he promptly forgot about them until April of this year, when media coverage of the anonymous, decentralised, peer-to-peer digital currency jogged his memory. Bitcoins are encrypted, so it took Koch a while to remember his password, but when he did he was very pleasantly surprised by the windfall.
In just four years, the value of his 5000 bitcoins had risen to around 5 million kroner (approx US$886,000). Spending just a fifth of his investment, he was able to buy an apartment in an affluent part of Oslo. We don’t know whether his girlfriend has apologised.