Bitmain Technologies Ltd, the world’s largest producer of cryptocurrency mining chips is planning to go public later this year and has proposed a world record initial public offering (IPO) price, according to documents obtained by CoinDesk.
The company is reportedly filing for an IPO as high as $18 billion at a market capitalization of between $40 and $50 billion in September. China International Capital Corporation (CICC) will be underwriting the process and the shares listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in the year’s fourth-quarter or the first-quarter of 2019.
Bitmain was valued at $15 billion ina Pre-IPO financing round
Bitmain on July 23 closed a pre-IPO financing round at $1 billion with a $15 billion valuation. That’s almost twice the estimated value of Coinbase, $8 billion as of April. The Cryptocurrency mining company will displace social media giant Facebook as the world’s largest initial public offerings with the $18 billion IPO sticker price. According to CoinDesk, an unnamed sovereign wealth fund managing assets worth $15 billion, China National Gold Group, Softbank Group and Tencent Holdings Ltd were among the participants in the pre-IPO round. A deadline of July 18 was given to funding firms and a $5 million minimum commitment to be signed over to Bitmain Technologies Holding Company, an offshore investment holding group based in the Cayman Islands, linked to billionaire Lei Jun, founder of Xiaomi.
Bitmain raised $50 million in the first (Series A) funding and $400 million during the second (Series B) funding, both led by Sequoia Capital China with the help of Coatue Management LLC, IDG Capital San Francisco, Capital Market Company GIC Private Limited Singapore, Edbi Pte Ltd Singapore, and Digital Sky Technologies Russia. The Series B round pushed the company’s value to $12 billion while Series A accounted for a $1 billion valuation at 5% of shares.
There was no information on the expected share price and volume, but the P/E ratio has been calculated to be 20 in the first year of public trading by investment banks familiar with the IPO, CoinDesk reports. Bitmain has made a total profit of $3.2 billion since 2016, including the first quarter of 2018. The company is expecting to hit $2 billion in profit at the end of 2018.
Bitmain machines raked 66.6 percent of the total mining volume in 2017
Beijing-based Bitmain was founded in 2013, primarily to produce chips used in mining cryptocurrencies algorithmically. Recently, it has started manufacturing chip hardware for the artificial intelligence industry. It is headed by 32-year-old founder Jihan Wu who visions digital currencies as the money of the future. Wu plans to position Bitmain as the most competitive firm in the circuit chip industry and has been working on taking one of the company public since June, reports Bloomberg.
The company has within the first five years of operation become one of the world’s most valuable cryptocurrency companies. Bitmain-run cryptocurrency mining pools covered 40% of the total mining network while the machines held 66% of the total mining volume last year. Wu’s effort so far in going public is absolutely yielding success and may suggest a greener significance for cryptocurrencies in the future.