First Crypto IPO on London Stock Exchange Captures $32.5 Million
London-based mining operation Argo is the first cryptocurrency firm to successfully launch an IPO on the London Stock Exchange, capturing £25 million (USD $32.5 million) in investor capital.
The August 3, 2018 launch of the public offering provides retail investors with the opportunity to purchase ordinary shares in the mining organization, which operates a mining facility in Quebec, at a rate of £0.001 each. Argo Minings’s June 11 IPO announcement marks the first time a cryptocurrency-focused platform gained an admission standard segment of the LSE Official List, with the purpose of the flotation as “raising the public profile of Argo and to provide new funds for expansion and long-term growth.”
It’s official! We are now a publicly traded company on the @LSEplc #Argo pic.twitter.com/E1f2BvRvdg
— Argo (@ArgoMining) August 3, 2018
Argo Moves to Legitimize Mining-as-a-Service
Argo has made 293,750,000 ordinary shares available, 156 million of which — accounting for 53.2% of the platform’s total issued shared capital — was open on August 3. The listing valued Argo Mining’s market capitalization at a total of £47 million, with Argo stating that the placing was “significantly over-subscribed.”
Argo Executive Chairman Jonathan Bixby commented on the launch in an official announcement:
“Argo’s admission to the London main market is a major step in the Company’s development and will put us in a strong position to execute our long-term growth strategy. We are delighted with the strong response from investors which will enable us to grow our business in multiple jurisdictions.”
Argo mining gained approval from the UK Listing Authority for the IPO in May, launching subscription mining services on June 11. The Argo platform offers customers cloud-based mining services — users are able to select from three separate monthly subscriptions allowing them to mine Bitcoin Gold, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, and Zcash.
Argo cofounder Mike Edwards outlined the Argo platform goal in the June 11 statement:
“Setting up a computer rig to mine cryptocurrency is challenging, inefficient and expensive. I knew that we had to change the game and democratise the process so that crypto-mining could become a mainstream consumer activity.”
Argo Focuses on GPU-based PoW Cryptocurrencies
The Argo Mining prospectus outlines a forward-leaning perspective on the future of cryptocurrency mining, notably providing a comprehensive introduction to mining and blockchain architecture. Focusing on Bitcoin Gold, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic and Zcash, Argo intends to work primarily with Ethash and Equihash hashing algorithms, but notes the platform could potentially move into Bitcoin mining subsequent to the ASIC hardware acquisition.
In addition to cryptocurrency mining, the Argo Mining prospectus outlines a range of alternative use cases for the Quebec-based Argo mining operation, including GPU-intensive applications such as machine learning, computational fluid dynamics, molecular modeling, and genomics.
Argo also holds infrastructure in China-based datacenters, facilitated by Shenzhen Stock Exchange-listed datacenter platform GoSun. The Argo prospectus outlines a current hardware capacity of seven racks comprising 10 servers each with 8 GPUs based in a Gatineau, Quebec facility.
Crypto Mining Platforms Race to Launch IPOs
While Argo Mining may be the first crypto mining platform to launch an IPO on the LSE, it isn’t the only mining operation seeking to issue ordinary shares in traditional markets. Crypto mining giant Bitmain is currently moving towards an IPO, with Bitmain Technologies Ltd Co-Founder Jihan Wu recently hinting toward the possibility of a listing in Hong Kong markets.
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