This is a contributing article from JOHN LEE QUIGLEY, Director of Research at HASHR8
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The latest industry in Bitcoin mining and give a brief overview of our Kazakhstan research report.
The second installment of HASHR8’s Bitcoin Mining Index is out! We have spent the past month speaking with professionals in the Kazakh Bitcoin mining industry to put together a report that helps miners who are considering Kazakhstan as a prospective region.
With an estimated energy surplus of ~3,000 MW, Kazakhstan allows miners to secure some of the most competitive electricity prices worldwide. Some miners in the region own power plants and substations which allows them to further reduce their electricity rate. We anticipate that some miners are within the lowest 5% of electricity rates secured by Bitcoin miners.
Low electricity rates is not the only advantage of mining in Kazakhstan. Proximity to China and possible VAT exemption on imported hardware means that miners also have favorable CapEx conditions. A federal law has also given the industry legal certainty. Several factors are favorable to Bitcoin miners operating in Kazakhstan. For the full research, download the report below.
Download Here: The State of Bitcoin Mining in Kazakhstan
Market Movements – Miner Margins Widen As Price and Difficulty Both Improve
Top-line revenue and the cost per Bitcoin mined are both improving for miners as price steadily rises but difficulty declines. Difficulty typically rises after price jumps as the higher BTC price makes it feasible for more miners to operate profitably.
However, an electricity shortage in Sichuan is forcing miners to shut down operations. While miners may be turning machines online in many regions after price rises, the hashrate coming offline in Sichuan is likely outsizing this.
Sichuan is estimated to account for roughly 9% of total Bitcoin network hashrate during the dry season in the region. With electricity shortages forcing miners in the region to turn machines offline, difficulty has dropped by 2.54% and 0.38% on the 14th and 28th of December respectively. Juri Bulovic – Director of Bitcoin Mining at Fidelity – believes many miners are currently generating Bitcoin at a cost of less than $10,000.
Industry Developments – Marathon Triple ASIC Fleet, Profitability Rises for Nordic Miners, and Bitmain Split
Marathon Patent Group to triple mining machine fleet with $170 million purchase. Marathon Patent Group has entered into a purchase agreement with Bitmain to buy 70,000 Antminer S19 mining machines. This purchase will more than triple their current fleet of 33,000 ASIC machines. An initial batch of 7,000 rigs is expected to be delivered in July 2021 and the full order is expected to be fulfilled by the end of December 2021. Marathon is purchasing the rigs at a price of roughly $25.50 per TH. According to hashrateindex, mining rigs are currently selling for $40.16 per TH on the secondary market. HASHR8 has received reports that some rigs have been selling for over $60 per TH.
Profitability triples for some Nordic Bitcoin mining facilities. The wettest weather in twenty years combined with the rising Bitcoin price has boosted profitability for mining facilities based in Nordic countries. Norway and Sweden are benefitting from some of the lowest electricity prices in the world after the wet weather boosted hydropower generation. A Bloomberg report notes that power prices have dropped to “close to zero for extended periods”. Philip Salter – head of operations at Genesis Mining – stated that their Swedish facility’s profitability has tripled since last year.
Bitmain is expected to split after a longtime battle between firm co-founders. Micree Zhan reportedly pledged his shares to raise $600 million and buy out fellow co-founder Jihan Wu’s shares. As part of the buyout, Micree will control the manufacturing business which accounts for over 90% of Bitmain’s revenue. Micree will also control Bitmain’s AI business, the Antpool mining pool, and domestic mining facilities. Jihan will take control of BTC.com mining pool, overseas mining facilities, and cloud mining platform Bitdeer. For a chronological document of how events unfolded between Micree and Jihan, view our timeline here.