ASIC Builder Canaan Considering US IPO After Hong Kong Filing Rejected

Colin Muller

Canaan Creative, a producer of application-specific integrated-circuit cryptocurrency miners (ASICs) and competitor to Bitmain, is considering conducting an Initial Public Offering (IPO) in the US after its IPO application to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEX) lapsed and was therefore rejected by default. Bloomberg reported the news today citing insider sources.

The China-based ASIC firm is in talks to “[sell] shares in New York as soon as [H1],” according to Bloomberg. Canaan had hoped to be trading on the HKEX by July 2018, after filing in May.

CryptoGlobe reported in November that Canaan’s IPO application in Hong Kong had expired to no result, despite backing from big names such as Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank AG and Credit Suisse Group. The firm had to continuously adjust its raising targets down, first from $2 billion to 1$ billion, then to $400,000.

An anonymous source, cited by CoinDesk, claimed that the HKEX was tepid on crypto-related businesses because of the industry’s youth and volatility, and that this coolness was causing delays in application approval. The source added that “The HKEX doesn’t want to be the first exchange in the world to approve [an ASIC producer] and have [it] die on them”

The three largest ASIC producers - Bitmain, Canaan and Ebang - had all filled for IPOs in Hong Kong during 2018. Bitmain’s and Ebang’s prospects for approval are not much better.

Success in the US?

The South China Morning Post (SCMP) recently reported that the HKEX, briefly an attractive IPO destination for Chinese tech firms after a 2018 reform of its listing rules, is rapidly waning in popularity in favor of US listing.

This is apparently due to the poor market performance of tech companies listed in Hong Kong, below expectations. Analysts cited by the SCMP claim that the US has a “a deeper investor base for technology companies,” and that IPOs there could be smaller and still succeed.

Canaan reported $191 million of revenue in 2017, according to its HKEX filing - far dwarfed by Bitmain’s $2.5 billion revenue during the same period.

As Tether Premium Disappears, Bitfinex and Ethfinex Launch New IEO Platform: Tokinex

Avi Rosten

Prominent exchanges Bitfinex and Ethfinex have announced a new IEO (Initial Exchange Offering) platform.

The new platform, Tokinex, allows users to participate in pre-vetted token sales from new projects listing on the site. In a departure from other similar offerings such as Binance Launchpad, token issuers on Tokinex don’t have to pay any upfront fees for listing, while successful launches on the platform will also benefit from listing on both Bitfinex and Ethfinex.

The new exchange also utilizes the KYC service from Blockpass, which allows customers to complete KYC verification but without storing data on the exchange. The first token sale will be announced on May 23rd, with the sale taking place on 13th June.

Will Harborne, founder of Ethfinex, told CryptoGlobe:

Tokinex has been several months in development, incorporating feedback, testing and learning to reach a quality level users have come to expect at Bitfinex and Ethfinex. It has been carefully crafted to put the user experience front and centre, from incorporating Block Pass for KYC that is easy to use and does not store personal data, to being able to contribute existing assets directly from the user’s own wallet, rather than having to purchase a native platform token to participate.

IEOs in 2019

This latest platform from Bitfinex adds to the growing list of IEO platforms that have followed Binance, including OKEx, Huobi and Bittrex.

For Bitfinex, the news comes in the aftermath of fraud allegations in April from the New York Attorney General against Bitfinex and Tether, over alleged losses of over $850 million. However, the Tether Risk Premium, - a measure of how much the market believes Tether to be riskier than its underlying USD - has since almost completely disappeared, suggesting that investors at the moment have little concern over Tether’s value.

This is likely due to restored investor confidence in Bitfinex and Tether, after Bitfinex CTO Paolo Ardoino revealed on May 13th that the company had raised $1 billion in a private token sale. The chart below shows the impact of the announcement - with the premium on the BTC price on the Bitfinex Exchange narrowing to zero following several weeks where bitcoin was trading above its spot price.

Bitfinex Premium Narrows