Bitfinex Accumulates BTC
Bitfinex joins its sister company, Tether, in accumulating BTC from its trading fees.
Bitfinex, one of the oldest and most popular crypto exchanges in the world, is reported to be holding bitcoin on its balance sheet. The move should come as no surprise, given that it earns fees in BTC every day, but is confirmation that the organization is taking the long view to crypto adoption. It's currently unclear how much BTC Bitfinex owns.
Paolo Ardoino, Bitfinex's CTO and co-founder, recently tweeted that the exchange had a policy of investing part of its profits back into the ecosystem—specifically mentioning the Lightning Network, RGB, and Liquid.
The Lightning Network is a popular L2 scaling solution for Bitcoin, enabling fast micropayments. RGB is a set of protocols that allow complex smart contracts to be executed in a scalable and private way on Bitcoin and Lightning. The Liquid Network is another L2 solution for Bitcoin that supports the issuance and management of digital assets.
Tether, Bitfinex, And BTC
In May this year, Tether announced that it would start using 15% of its operating profits to purchase bitcoin, having accumulated $2.5 billion in excess reserves. This organized strategy formalizes their existing approach of holding value in BTC. Tether Limited and Bitfinex and both owned by Hong Kong-based iFinex Inc.
Bitfinex likely does not yet have the significant holdings of its sister company, but as a major company in the crypto space, will no doubt be seeking to build a substantial portfolio to take advantage of any future value increases.
Notable Bitcoin Holders
The list of institutional, national, and corporate bitcoin holders offers a few surprises.
As of July 31, Microstrategy was the largest corporate holder, with 152,800 BTC.
The US owns 207,189 BTC, and China 194,000 BTC, mainly from seizures of illegally-obtained funds. The Ukrainian government holds over $1 billion in bitcoin, at 46,351 BTC.
Tether is only the third-largest holder among privately-owned companies. MtGox still holds 200,000 BTC, pending distribution to former customers at the end of bankruptcy proceedings, and blockchain development company Block.one holds 140,000 BTC.
Lastly, the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust holds an impressive 643,572 BTC, or 3% of all BTC that will ever exist, and almost four times as many as Microstrategy.
Subscribe to our newsletter and follow us on Twitter.