The price of Ethereum has increased from $8.16 per ether on 1 January 2017 to the current price of around $173.
This means that if you invested R50,000 in Ethereum on 1 January 2017, your ether would be worth over R1 million today.
Ethereum is a decentralised platform which runs smart contracts – applications that run as programmed without any possibility of downtime, censorship, fraud, or third-party interference.
The value token of the Ethereum blockchain is called ether, listed as ETH, and traded on cryptocurrency exchanges.
Like Bitcoin, the dominant cryptocurrency, the price of Ethereum changes according to demand.
It is not uncommon for cryptocurrencies to be very volatile, with big changes in value based on developments and support in the cryptocurrency market.
The latest spike in the value of Ethereum can be attributed to the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance adding 86 members to its ranks.
The new members include Samsung, Merck, Toyota, Broadridge, DTCC, and the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.
Bitcoin has also shown strong growth in recent months, increasing in value from $997.69 per Bitcoin on 1 January 2017 to a high of $2,162.22 on 22 May.
This massive increase in value may scare off some investors, but according to South African entrepreneur Vinny Lingham, this is only the beginning.
Lingham, who is a board member at the Bitcoin Foundation, predicts that Bitcoin will reach $3,000 in 2017.
He warned that we may see a bust in the price of Bitcoin in the short term, but said we are not close to the top yet.
The graphs below show the value of Ethereum and Bitcoin for the year-to-date.

Ethereum – 1 January to 22 May 2017

Bitcoin – 1 January to 22 May 2017