Regardless of China’s ban on crypto-related mining activities within its borders, top miner makers in the country continue their drive to meet market demands and sustain their operations.
It comes as protests broke out in Kazakhstan this week over the soaring cost of fuel leading to a nationwide internet network disconnection that has seen the hashrate of top mining pools such as AntPool, Poolin, F2pool, ViaBTC drop and 12% of Bitcoin’s worldwide computational power vanished.
Canaan, Bitmain continue their global footprint push
While the situation unfolds, Canaan CEO, Nangeng Zhang, described their expansion into Kazakhstan as strategic for their value chain diversification. He added that crypto mining “shall be another key strategic focus for the Company to capitalise on the growth of the digital assets industry.”
Around the same time, one of the largest mining companies in North America, Riot Blockchain, disclosed it has entered into a non-fixed price sales and purchase agreement with Bitmain Technologies to acquire 18,000 Antminer Model S19 Xp Bitcoin mining equipment for about $202.86 million.
The purchase agreement requires Bitmain to deliver about 3,000 miners every month between July and December 2022.
Also going into purchase agreements with Bitmain is BitNile which is to take a total delivery of 20,600 Bitcoin miners to achieve mining production capacity of approximately 2.24 exahashes per second upon full deployment. BitNile started receiving 300 S19j Pro Antminers per month in November 2021 but the schedule is to increase to 2,300 miners per month as from March 2022.
Should the 20,600 Bitcoin miners be fully operational and its current mining difficulty level of 24.3 trillion is maintained, the company makes a projected price sensitivity analysis of total Bitcoin mining revenue. BitNile estimates – subject to the actual delivery and installation of Bitcoin miners – to make a Bitcoin mining revenue (net of power costs) of at least 64% upon full deployment at a Bitcoin sales price of $20,000. The estimated revenue jumps to 89% at a Bitcoin price of $65,000.
Bitmain has recently received a 78,000 Antminer S-19 XP miners order costing nearly $900 million from Marathon Digital Holdings. The delivery of 13,000 units per month is set for between July and December.
Smaller crypto mining markets popping up
All these put together indicates that Canaan and Bitmain are still leading positions in the industry even as new mining markets are emerging in the wake of China’s crypto mining ban. While small players are jumping into cryptocurrencies in Thailand – about 100,000 Thai miners now – according to a report, others are looking to Laos where new interests are developing even from government quarters.
Elsewhere, crypto mining has reportedly become popular among young people in Kosovo as the country has one of Europe’s cheapest electricity rates. It’s the same in Abkhazia, a breakaway region from Georgia after the Soviet Union collapsed. There’s been a crypto craze that has seen Bitcoin mining become attractive for the region’s cheap electricity even though it is now an illegal activity as it causes power cuts. Crypto miners in Abkhazia have also become targets of burglaries – some of which are violent – with thieves seeking to cart away as many mining equipment as they can.