According to a report by Norwegian newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN), billionaire businessman Øystein Stray Spetalen, has recently invested in crypto exchange MiraiEx and Bitcoin.

DN’s report, which was published last night, says that the Norwegian billionaire has done a complete 180 on Bitcoin. Apparently, on March 18, Spetalen had this to say about Bitcoin at the (virtual) DB Invest conference:

The only thing I have made an analysis of is that bitcoin today consumes as much energy as all of Norway’s energy consumption. It is extremely environmentally hostile. If one really meant anything about bitcoin, the authorities and the EU should ban this immediately. Then you cut CO 2 emissions considerably, he says, and describes it as a nonsense currency.

It’s just nonsense. We are doing well with the payment systems that are in place today.

10 days earlier, Norwegian industrial giant Aker ASA had announced that it had “established Seetee AS (‘Seetee’), a new company dedicated to investing in projects and companies throughout the Bitcoin ecosystem.”

In a letter to shareholders, Norwegian billionaire businessman Kjell Inge Røkke, who is the Chairman of Aker said:

I want to state up­front that I am aware that Bit­coin is of­ten crit­i­cised for a num­ber of per­ceived challenges, includ­ing its elec­tric­i­ty con­sump­tion, its in­abil­i­ty to scale with respect to trans­ac­tions, and its po­ten­tial to facilitate anony­mous il­le­git­imate pay­ments. We be­lieve that Bit­coin can be a so­lu­tion rather than a prob­lem for each of those.

He then explained why Aker had decided to get into the Bitcoin space:

Aker’s de­ci­sion to en­ter Bit­coin through See­tee is the re­sult of a long and fun­da­men­tal dis­cus­sion about value. I have been drink­ing from the firehose since last sum­mer. While this let­ter is my way of ex­press­ing my thoughts on the mat­ter, my in­sights are large­ly de­rived from read­ing ar­ticles and books, lis­ten­ing to pod­casts and watch­ing videos, as well as conver­sa­tions with peo­ple around me.

He then went on to say that Aker had decided that not investing in Bitcoin would be the riskiest decision:

Risk is not an ob­vi­ous con­cept. What’s com­mon­ly con­sid­ered risky is frequent­ly not. And vice ver­sa. We are used to think­ing that cash is risk free. But it’s not. It’s im­plic­it­ly taxed by in­fla­tion at a small rate every year. It adds up. Cen­tral bankers have mag­i­cal­ly agreed that they should tar­get two percent in­fla­tion, which im­plies that one third of your mon­ey’s worth is taxed away every twen­ty years. If it was three per­cent, al­most half of it would be gone in that time.

Røkke later added:

We be­lieve bitcoin is go­ing to be on the right side of his­to­ry. But we should re­mind our­selves that some will re­sist force­ful­ly: Nor­way was the last coun­try in Eu­rope to adopt colour tv in 1972, sev­er­al years af­ter the tech­nol­o­gy was avail­able.

Now, however, it seems that Spetalen has changed his mind about Bitcoin, perhaps in no part due to seeing fellow Norwegian billionaire Røkke get into Bitcoin.

According to DN’s report, this is what he said during a recent interview with Norwegian business newspaper Finansavisen:

When the facts change, I change. I met the Miraiex founders Thuc and Øyvind the day after the podcast was recorded in early March and realized that I had been wrong. And when I also read that Kjell Inge Røkke had gone into bitcoin, it was quite obvious. Can’t bear to see that Røkke makes money and not me.

Spetalen also told Finansavisen that he had invested in Bitcoin.

Featured Image by “enriquelopezgarre” via

The views and opinions expressed by the author are for informational purposes only and do not constitute financial, investment, or other advice.