A recent look at a pre-IPO information page for investors revealed that Bitmain—the largest producer of mining equipment, known as ASICs, for various cryptocurrencies—has a stash of half a billion dollars in Bitcoin Cash.
The news was brought to our attention after we noticed a tweet from Samson Mow, the CSO of Blockstream, showing the details.
Apparently, Bitmain sold a majority of its Bitcoin for Bitcoin Cash. Mow suggests that if the Bitcoin Core developers didn’t spot a vulnerability in BCH’s network in time for the developers to fix it, the company would have lost all of its investment.
However, the report couldn’t be attributed to the entire Bitcoin Core developer community. After all, it was only one of the group—Cory Fields—who spotted the issue, reported it discreetly, and allowed some time for Bitcoin Cash’s development team to implement the fix.
In December 2016, Bitmain held exactly 71,560 BTC. This was before Bitcoin Cash existed.
We then saw it shift its holdings, selling off 49,478 of these coins to gain 1,021,316 BCH, as far as its earnings report for March 2018 can tell us. At this moment, that stash is worth approximately $553 million.
This impressive amount of BCH could mean either that Bitmain wants to dabble in the markets as a whale with more influence on a coin or it’s preparing for a possible bull market in the cryptocurrency.
One user on Twitter in Mow’s thread suggests that BCH is preferred by miners who buy their ASICs. This may have also caused some of the rise in BCH holdings.
Since we don’t know the exact date that Bitmain sold off its Bitcoin, we can’t tell exactly how much new ASIC purchases may have contributed to this.
Other users made fun of the fact that Bitmain listed Bitcoin Cash with the “BCC” ticker, which belongs to Bitconnect—a coin that turned out to be a cash-grab and a scam.
Whatever Bitmain’s motivations are, the company is likely to keep us guessing until it makes its next move.