Bitcoin Mining Giant Bitmain Valued at $12 Billion in Funding Round

Francisco Memoria
  • Bitcoin mining giant Bitmain was valued at $12 billion in its Series B funding round, which raised between $300 and $400 million.
  • The company is reportedly still looking to launch an IPO.

China-based Bitmain, a leading bitcoin mining hardware manufacturer which owns a large portion of the flagship cryptocurrency’s hashrate, has reportedly been valued at $12 billion in its latest Series B funding round.

According to local news outlet Caixin, the round brought in between $300 and $400 million, and was led by various notable companies, including US-based hedge fund Coatue, Singapore government-backed investment fund EDBI, and Sequoia Capital China.

Per Caixin’s report, the funding round stands out as Bitmain’s Series A funding round saw it raise $50 million in July of 2017. This time the company, which last year is said to have raked in $3 billion in revenue, was valued at $12 billion.

The outlet’s report restated that the company is looking into conducting its own initial public offering (IPO), with a pre-IPO funding round set to come in the future. No specific details, however, were presented.

The bitcoin mining giant is notably not the only bitcoin mining hardware manufacturer looking to conduct an IPO, as one of its competitors, Caanan Creative, has confirmed in May it applied for an IPO worth around $1 billion with the Hong Kong Stock exchange.

Bitmain is notably seen as one of the most powerful companies in the cryptocurrency space. Led by 32-year-old Jihan Wu, it was recently named one of the 21 EOS block producers (BPs) – just like Genesis Mining – and sells its own mining machines.

Along with a high sales volume, Bitmain owns AntPool and BTC.com, which combined have nearly 35 percent of the flagship cryptocurrency network’s hashrate. It also holds shares in ViaBTC, which controls an additional 12.6 percent of the hashrate.

In theory, Bitmain could pull a 51 percent attack on bitcoin, but its co-founder and CEO Jihan Wu argues the move would be foolish, as it would lead to economic losses for him and his company.

As reported, the company is set to invest $50 million in the IPO of Opera, the company behind the popular Opera browser, which is said to have over 320 million active monthly users.

Cannabis Shops Turn to Crypto Apps Amidst Coronavirus Cash Shortages

Michael LaVere
  • Cannabis shops in Boulder, Colorado are using bitcoin payment app Strike to conduct "contactless" exchanges.
  • Cash shortages and lack of sanitation are causing businesses to find alternative means for transaction. 

Cannabis shops are using bitcoin payment services to conduct business in place of fiat amidst the coronavirus pandemic. 

According to a report by CoinDesk, cannabis dispensaries in Boulder, Colorado have been onboarded to the closed beta for Strike, a bitcoin payment service application founded by lighting network supporter Zap. 

Zap, founded by Jack Mallers, has been operating a closed beta for the payment application Strike which allows users the option of sending bitcoin or dollars and receiving funds in their bank account. The application uses a simple QR code interface, similar to Venmo, that allows users to send funds without having prior knowledge or expertise with bitcoin. 

Mallers said, 

Every Strike user is given a public domain at strike.me. We’re using Lightning for really fast online settlement of value transfers. … It’s also beneficial for privacy on the sender’s side.

Johnny Kurish, general manager at Boulder’s Helping Hands Herbals cannabis shop, said the application allowed his dispensary to process $1,000 worth of purchases since being added to the beta last week. 

Kurish said the dispensary will switch to only accepting Strike payments, which allow for contactless exchanges in light of the coronavirus pandemic. 

He said, 

We’re really lucky to have curbside drop-offs. We check the ID through the roll-up window, deliver the cannabis to a podium in front of the car. We’re happy to reopen with an option that’s safe for our staff.

Featured Image Credit: Photo via Pixabay.com