Even prior to the arrival of the current world health pandemic, many cryptocurrency believers have been confident in crypto’s ability to securely serve as a safe haven… a dependable defense against random chaos. A recent article by an industry insider observer, Cointelegraph.com discussed this, saying: “With the COVID-19 pandemic rearranging society at every level, the allure of a safe haven reigns supreme for our battered psyches. In the realm of financial instruments, the search for the safest of safe havens, also known as a store of value, has taken on a new urgency. (Are cryptocurrencies that) safe haven? Will cryptocurrency prove to be a store of value above all?” It continued: “Safe havens have long played a key role in economics and investing. Traditionally, a safe haven has been an investment in an instrument expected to increase its value during market uncertainty. Safe havens add diversification to portfolios and are crucial investment strategy components for retail players and institutional investors alike. Mentioned in today’s commentary includes: Ebang International Holdings (NASDAQ: EBON), Canaan Inc. (NASDAQ: CAN), Riot Blockchain, Inc. (NASDAQ: RIOT), NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ: NVDA), Marathon Patent Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: MARA).
With their deep history in serving humanity’s sense of well-being, there is not surprisingly a long list of safe havens that predate Bitcoin (and other cryptocurrencies). These include commodities, United States Treasury’s and select fiat currencies, equity strategies and hedge funds, as well as more tangible assets such as precious metals (gold and silver), real estate and even art. Now, cryptocurrencies have been added to that list. Although Bitcoin’s origins are firmly rooted in a peer-to-peer electronic cash system, a funny thing happened on the way to fulfilling those utilitarian aims. Satoshi Nakamoto’s blockchain-based creation morphed into something much more akin to a security, as long settlement and transaction times make it a less attractive method of payment. Meanwhile, its rise in value over the last decade has far exceeded anyone’s expectations: Bitcoin has outperformed every other asset class including real estate, gold and the S&P 500.”
In a recent NASDAQ article, Ebang International Holdings (NASDAQ: EBON), which makes equipment for cryptocurrency mining in China, announced terms for its IPO recently. In its latest filing, the company selected the Nasdaq as its listing exchange and added Prime Number Capital as an underwriter.
The Zhejiang, China-based company plans to raise $106 million by offering 19.3 million shares at a price range of $4.50 to $6.50. At the midpoint of the proposed range, Ebang International Holdings would command a market value of $721 million.
Ebang International Holdings was founded in 2010 and booked $109 million in revenue for the 12 months ended December 31, 2019. It plans to list on the Nasdaq under the symbol EBON. AMTD Global Markets, Loop Capital Markets, and Prime Number Capital are the joint bookrunners on the deal. Find out more about EBON by visiting: https://www.ebang.co/
The Cointelegraph.com article concluded: “Bitcoin’s financial status has evolved yet another step and is seen in many circles as a safe-haven instrument. Complete decentralization is at its core, keeping Bitcoin away from the whims of central banking and governments’ appetites for quantitative easing. In a brilliant stroke, digital scarcity is hardwired into its DNA: The supply of tokens is firmly capped at 21 million, a key characteristic that should continue to drive its price higher over time and has led to the widespread perception that Bitcoin equals “digital gold.”
Other recent developments in the markets this week include:
Canaan Inc. (NASDAQ: CAN) a leading high-performance computing solutions provider, recently announced its unaudited financial results for the three months ended March 31, 2020. Gross profit in the first quarter of 2020 increased by 417.0% to RMB2.4 million (US$0.4 million) from RMB0.5 million in the same period of 2019. Gross margin in the first quarter of 2020 expanded to 3.5% from 1.0% in the same period of 2019.
“On behalf of our team at Canaan, I wish to sincerely thank all of the medical staff and community workers who are combating the COVID-19 pandemic on the frontlines to keep our society moving forward,” commented Mr. Nangeng Zhang, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Canaan. “As the COVID-19 pandemic swept the globe, we continued to refine our R&D capabilities to develop a strong lineup of next-generation products. In addition, we also lowered the barrier for consumers to enter the Bitcoin mining space through a series of SaaS solutions designed to help our clients reduce the costs of maintaining our mining machines. As such, we further improved the quality of our product offerings and strengthened our value propositions, which allowed us to minimize the impact of the fluctuations in Bitcoin price and related derivatives during the Bitcoin halving. Going forward, we expect that our core commitment to technological innovation, product leadership and strong service value proposition to our clients will fuel our growth in the years to come and help create sustainable value for our shareholders.”
Riot Blockchain, Inc. (NASDAQ: RIOT) one of the few Nasdaq-listed cryptocurrency mining companies in the United States, recently announced continued improvements and optimization of its bitcoin (“BTC”) production, via the relocation of its 4,000 Bitmain S17 Pro miners from Oklahoma City to Coinmint, LLC’s (“Coinmint”) facility, in Massena, New York. The Company also announces corporate updates and its BTC production update for the month of May 2020.
As previously disclosed, Riot entered into a colocation agreement with Coinmint. The transition to Coinmint is an important part of Riot’s focus to improve its production cost efficiencies and mining output. The Coinmint energy pricing and hosting arrangement is expected to significantly decrease the direct cost of BTC production as compared to Riot’s Oklahoma City operation, while also appreciably increasing mining uptime. Additionally, Riot now has a clear path forward to continue expanding its total hashing capacity.
NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ: NVDA) recently unveiled the NVIDIA® Mellanox® UFM® Cyber-AI platform, which minimizes downtime in InfiniBand data centers by harnessing AI-powered analytics to detect security threats and operational issues, as well as predict network failures.
This extension of the UFM platform product portfolio — which has managed InfiniBand systems for nearly a decade — applies AI to learn a data center’s operational cadence and network workload patterns, drawing on both real-time and historic telemetry and workload data. Against this baseline, it tracks the system’s health and network modifications, and detects performance degradations, usage and profile changes.
The new platform provides alerts of abnormal system and application behavior, and potential system failures and threats, as well as performs corrective actions. It is also targeted to deliver security alerts in cases of attempted system hacking to host undesired applications, such as cryptocurrency mining. The result is reduced data center downtime — which typically costs more than $300,000 an hour, according to research by ITIC.
Marathon Patent Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: MARA) one of the few Nasdaq listed cryptocurrency mining companies in the United States, recently announced the purchase of an additional 500 of the latest generation Bitmain S19 Pro Miners. These 500 miners will produce 110 TH/s and generate 55 PH/s (petahash) of hashing power, bringing the Company’s total Hashrate to approximately 240 PH/s when fully deployed. This compares to the Company’s previous S-9 production of 46 PH/s. The purchase price paid was $1,190,000. The Company expects to take delivery of these latest units by the end of September.
On May 11, 2020, Marathon announced the purchase of 700 M30S+ (80 TH) miners which now have been fully installed and are operational. On May 12, 2020, the Company announced the purchase 660 Bitmain S19 Pro Miners followed by the announced purchase of an additional 500 on May 19, 2020. Today’s announcement of the purchase of an additional 500 S19 Pro Miners brings the total state of the art, next generation miners purchased in the past month to 2,360 units. The Company is expecting delivery and installation of 1,160 Bitmain S19 Pro ASIC Miners in approximately the next 30-60 days, followed by the remaining 500 shortly thereafter.
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