DeFi Mania & Bitcoin Prices Pushed Crypto Users to the 100 Million Milestone: Report

Global crypto users reached 106 million in January 2021, with 71 million unique crypto users who have ever owned BTC and 14 million who bought ETH in the month.

The number of global crypto users reached 106 million in January 2021, reveals the latest report by, a payment and cryptocurrency platform.

It was in January that the number of users surpassed the 100 million milestone for the first time.

This strong growth in Bitcoin adoption was the main driver for January’s 15.7% increase in the global crypto population. The likely event that drove the crypto adoption was the huge growth of decentralized finance (DeFi) last summer.

The DeFi mania took over the cryptocurrency market and made it a $10 billion market with just about $600 million in its TVL (total value locked) at the beginning of 2020. Currently, the TVL of the market stands around $40 billion.

Besides PayPal allowing its customers to buy, sell, and hold cryptocurrencies, the “massive institutional adoption” and facilitation of cryptocurrencies were other drivers of crypto adoption.

This increased adoption was also what pushed the price of Bitcoin past previous ATH $20,000 in mid-December to a new all-time high of $58,300 last week.

GlobalCryptoUser Growth Rate

The “exceptionally” strongest months that saw the highest growth in the crypto population were June and August last year and January 2021.

73 million users were involved in cryptocurrency in June, which jumped to 88 million two months later, adding 15 million more. In the next four months, only 4 million new users were added to the market, while 14 million were added in just one month of January this year.

This further revealed that “periods of strong growth come after periods of strong price performance in Bitcoin,” noted the report, Measuring Global Crypto Users.

While Bitcoin saw tremendous growth in January following months of strong price action and waves of institutional adoption, including PayPal, Tesla, MicroStrategy, the leading digital currency, wasn’t alone.


Ethereum also saw a jump in its global population to 14 million, compared to Bitcoin’s 71 million, from 12 million in the month of November and December. In October, there were 11 million unique crypto users who have ever owned ETH, and 53 million bought BTC.

Ethereum actually “led the crypto market’s growth in August 2020, during the height of the DeFi mania,” reads the report.

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