Bitcoin News: Are We About To Witness World’s First Bitcoin IPO?

Bitcoin Group has announced it will pursue an initial public offering (IPO) in Australia. If successful, it would be the first bitcoin company to offer its shares to the public in an IPO. The Melbourne-based firm offers a cryptocurrency arbitrage service, but plans to turn mining into its main revenue source if its offering is approved.

Bitcoin Group’s chief executive, Sam Lee, said: “We believe for bitcoin businesses in the mining industry be taken seriously they need to first have the transparency, accountability and legitimacy of a listed company.” Bitcoin Group aims to raise AU $20m from the sale of 100 million shares at AU$0.20 a share, and would trade on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

Notably, Lee also runs Bitcoins Reserve, an offshore cryptocurrency arbitrage fund whose operations will be folded into Bitcoin Group. The fund claims a return of 765% to its clients for the 12 months ended from 24th May, according to its prospectus.

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Bitcoin Group has already engaged with mining rig makers and signed an agreement with an electricity supplier in anticipation of starting its mining business, according to an investor presentation. Lee says Bitcoin Group will remain “hardware agnostic” although he added that he planned to use some of the proceeds from the listing, if it goes through, to invest in ASIC chip makers.

“Our role is to provide a transparent, accountable and legitimate vehicle for our investors to gain exposure to bitcoin mining, which is currently one of the most profitable segments within the industry,” Lee said.

Bitcoin Financial News

Bitcoin Group has announced its listing plans as Australia’s regulatory regime for digital currencies begins to take shape. In August, the Australian Tax Office (ATO) published guidance on the tax treatment of digital currencies for the first time.

Under the ATO guidance, digital currencies could be subject to both capital gains and goods and services taxes. This means that buying bitcoin on an Australian exchange, for example, would incur the additional 10% goods and services tax.

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