Moving the Chain Spotlight #42: Charlie Lee

3 min read


Charlie Lee was born in the West African nation of Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast). When he was 14 years old, his family relocated to the United States.

After graduating from Lawrenceville High School, Lee decided to attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, commonly referred to as MIT. During his time at MIT, the Ivory Coast native earned a Master’s Degree in Computer Science.

Lee spent the majority of his early career as a Software Engineer for several companies. Kana Communications, Guidewire Software, and even Google, are all organization he worked for, prior to discovering blockchain tech.

It was in 2011, when Lee came across an article on the web, that he was introduced to Bitcoin for the very first time. As his interest in Bitcoin grew, Lee decided to try and create his own altcoin – in an effort to improve upon the original.

His first attempt to launch a digital token called Fairbix was unsuccessful. However, the MIT grad managed to get it right the second time around, when he created Litecoin (LTC).

Litecoin is similar to bitcoin and even uses the same blockchain. However, a different Graphical User Interface (GUI), speedier block transaction times, and a greater maximum supply cap are some of the ways it differs from its predecessor.

Litecoin has been quite the success story. At press time, it’s the 6th most valuable cryptocurrency by market capitalization. Plus, it is one of the most recognized altcoins in the industry.

Though he is best known as the creator of Litecoin, Lee was among the first people hired by Coinbase – one the most popular cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. He served as the company’s Engineering Manager and Director of Enigneers from 2013 until 2017.

As a creator of one of the most successful cryptocurrencies, who also helped make Coinbase one of the industry’s top exchanges, Charlie Lee has definitely “Moved the Chain.”


“I think the most important thing for Litecoin today is adoption. Adoption in terms of exchanges, merchants, and users. We need more exchanges to support LTC to improve liquidity. We need more merchant processors and merchants to support LTC so that people can spend LTC everywhere. And finally, we need more users to use LTC in their daily lives.”

Fun Fact

Despite having created the popular cryptocurrency, Charlie Lee no longer owns any Litecoin. Last December, the crypto pioneer announced that he had “sold and donated” all his tokens. Lee stated that he felt it was a conflict of interest to own and tweet about Litecoin – since his comments could potentially alter the price point.

Moving the Chain is an ongoing series from Blockchain WTF that shines a spotlight on folks who are making an impact in the world of blockchain technology and cryptocurrency