Concept of Bitcoin Mining

Chinese block reward mining chip designer files for Nasdaq IPO with SEC

Nano Labs, a Chinese block reward mining chip designer, is looking to go public in the United States. The firm has filed for an initial public offering (IPO) on Nasdaq with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

According to a South China Morning Post (SCMP) report, Nano Labs is also looking to raise a total of $50 million from the sale of American depositary shares and pivot the functionality of its chips to serving metaverse platforms.

In the filing, co-founder Kong Jianping stated that the metaverse would open up the next era for humankind. This is why Nano Labs is making moves to help the world explore it.

“It is my intention that Nano Labs will be committed to developing the power of the Metaverse and walking among the key players to help the world explore and cognize the Metaverse. I am earnestly confident that the Metaverse will open a new era for humankind,” Jianping said.

Nano Labs was founded by Jianping and Sun Qifeng, former executives of block reward mining hardware makers Canaan. The company currently produces high throughput computing (HTC) chips that are used in mining proof-of-work consensus digital currencies, including BTC and Ethereum, among others.

With its new stated mission, the company now intends to provide “ubiquitous computing power to the Metaverse computing network with our fabless logic-memory integrated circuits.” The pivot, in part, has been influenced by China’s crackdown on block reward mining.

Block reward miners still showing resilience in China

Before the country’s blanket crackdown on digital assets, the Chinese market was Nano Labs’ biggest customer. The company has previously set up operations in Singapore, but still reported net losses of 174.9 million yuan (US$26 million) in 2021. Its bid to list in the U.S. may also face drawbacks from regulatory approval in both China and the United States.

Meanwhile, underground block reward mining activities continue to persist despite the clampdown in China. Recently published data from the Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance (CCAC) shows that block reward mining has made a strong comeback in China after falling to near zero last year.

Per the data, China is now the second-largest contributor to the hash rate of the BTC network trailing the U.S. China contributes 21.11% of the global BTC mining hash rate largely from covert mining activities, as the study finds.

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