Billionaire banking heir and cryptocurrency investor Matthew Mellon dies in rehab at 54

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Dom PerignonMatthew Mellon, centre, at a Dom Perignon party in Miami in 2015.

  • Billionaire Matthew Mellon is dead at 54.
  • He died at a rehab facility in Mexico after struggling with an addiction to painkillers.
  • Mellon is a descendant of the founders of Mellon Bank and investment bank Drexel Burnham Lambert.
  • In recent years he made a reported $US1 billion investing in cryptocurrency XRP.

LONDON – Billionaire banking heir and cryptocurrency investor Matthew Mellon has died in a rehab facility in Mexico, according to multiple press reports. He was 54.

His cousin Peter Stephaich confirmed Mellon’s death but declined Tuesday to provide any details, according to Bloomberg.

A representative told the New York Post that the billionaire “died suddenly” in Cancun, Mexico, where he was attending a drug rehabilitation facility.

He was the former chair of the finance committee of the Republican Party in New York, and had struggled with an addiction to opioid-based painkillers Oxycontin.

Mellon was the descendant of two great banking dynasties. On his father’s side, he was descended from the founder of Mellon Bank, now part of BNY Mellon. And on his mother’s side, he was related to Anthony Joseph Drexel, the cofounder of now-defunct Wall Street investment bank Drexel Burnham Lambert, which pioneered junk bonds in the 1980s.

In recent years, Mellon had also made money investing in cryptocurrencies. He was an early investor in XRP, the cryptocurrency linked to startup Ripple, and Forbes reported in February of this year that his investment in the cryptocurrency was worth $US1 billion.

Mellon’s representative told the New York Post: “Mellon made his fortune in cryptocurrency, turning a $US2 million investment into $US1 billion.”

Mellon is survived by his first wife, Jimmy Choo cofounder Tamara Mellon, his second wife, fashion designer Nicole Hanley, and his three children.

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