Can these big miners actually pull off their IPOs?

Leo Zhang

By Leo Zhang

Three Chinese ASIC manufacturers (Bitmain, Canaan, and ebang) are preparing for public offerings. As the price of bitcoin rocketed upwards in the past year, ASIC manufacturers (who make specialized servers meant for mining coins) reaped billions of dollars of profits.

Now these manufacturers are turning to the public equity markets for further expansion. What would the cryptocurrency scene look like if large miners were even better capitalized? Will the new flood of hashpower make ASIC-resistance completely futile? And more meaningfully: which projects will survive when all networks are infested ASICs?

Bitcoin miner maker Canaan files for Hong Kong IPO
(CoinDesk, by Wolfie Zhao)

"Meanwhile, the document also offers a glimpse into the firm's financial health. According to a financial statement included as part of the IPO filing, Canaan raised 1.3 billion yuan ($204 million) in revenue in 2017 alone, marking 3,000 percent year-on-year growth compared with 2016."

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"Interestingly though, once we depart from a strong centralized authority, strong assurances might only be possible at the other end of the spectrum: via highly decentralized networks. The middle ground — quasi-decentralized networks — will likely be co-opted by economic and social pressures in such a way that they present an inferior option (weak assurances) relative to both centralized and highly decentralized alternatives."

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"Let’s consider what the commons dilemmas have looked like in the cyber world. Storage, bandwidth, and computation are the three basic infrastructural needs of the electronic universe. And rather than entering into a social contract with Uncle Sam directly, cyber citizens have entered into social contracts (otherwise known as Terms of Service) with the Big Four."

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