Hong Kong-listed Chinese firm Meitu has revealed it invested $22.1 million in ether, the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, and $17.9 million in bitcoin on March 5.
According to the company’s announcement, it bought a total of 15,000 ETH and 379.1 BTC via open market transactions. The move sees Meitu join other publicly traded companies like Tesla, Square, and MicroStrategy, which have invested billions in BTC.
Meitu has notably also invested in the native cryptocurrency of the Ethereum blockchain, ether, while other publicly traded firms only added BTC to their treasuries. CoinDesk reports Meitu’s purchases were under the terms of a previously board-approved cryptocurrency investment plan.
The cryptocurrency investment plan allows the company to invest up to $100 million into cryptocurrencies, using funds from its cash reserves other than remaining proceeds from the company’s initial public offering (IPO) back in 2016.
Meitu said that it’s buying cryptocurrency in a bid to diversify its holdings away from cash, but added that “more importantly, the Board considers this a demonstration to investors and stakeholders” that the firm has “the vision and determination” to embrace technological innovation.
The company is evaluating integrating blockchain technology into its overseas business, which could involve the launch of Ethereum-based decentralized applications. In a statement, Meitu said blockchain technology can disrupt existing financial and tech industries “similar to the manner in which mobile internet has disrupted the PC internet and many other offline industries.”
The Board believes cryptocurrencies have ample room for appreciation in value and by allocating part of its treasury in cryptocurrencies can also serve as a diversification to holding cash (which is subject to depreciation pressure due to aggressive increases in money supply by central banks globally) in treasury management.
Meitu’s shares initially moved up after the announcement, but are currently down over 6% for the day. After the announcement was first published its shares jumped.
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