said Michael Saylor, CEO of MicroStrategy, a software company that has built up a large reserve of Bitcoin. “It was kind of hard to explain in theory before the crash happened. But now it has.”
In 2020, Mr. Saylor announced that MicroStrategy would start hoarding Bitcoin because it has “the potential for longer-term value appreciation rather than cash holding.” At the end of June, the company had 129,699 bitcoins, which were purchased for less than $4 billion, according to SEC filings. (With the recent decline in the value of Bitcoin, this stock is now worth about $1 billion less than what MicroStrategy paid for.)
At the height of the crash, MicroStrategy spent $10 million on 480 Bitcoin, even as the coin’s price dropped to around $20,000. The purchase was the smallest that MicroStrategy had made in over a year. Mr. Saylor said the volume buying was not indicative of his lack of confidence in the currency; He said it was the most the company could handle, given the cash it had.
“I always wish we could buy more,” he said. “He’s frustrated.”
Mr. Saylor and other prominent figures have sometimes complained about the underrepresentation of bitcoin in Washington, as lawmakers have expressed growing concern about the environmental impact of cryptocurrencies.
Some of the crypto-defense work in Washington is funded by companies offering virtual currencies built on an alternative verification system, which requires less energy to maintain. In April, Chris Larsen, the billionaire co-founder of cryptocurrency company Ripple, announced that he was contributing $5 million to a marketing campaign calling for Bitcoin to abandon the energy-intensive mining infrastructure, which proponents insist is essential to keeping the network secure. . and fair.
Now, Bitcoin supporters are building their own political machines. This year, Bitcoin advocate David Zell started the Bitcoin Policy Institute, a think tank advancing a pro-bitcoin agenda in Washington. The institute argued that concerns about Bitcoin’s energy consumption are exaggerated.