500.com — a New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)-listed Chinese sports lotto company is expanding its investment outlay in the Bitcoin (BTC) mining arena. The firm is the latest to increase its hardware inventory as the global Bitcoin mining hash race continues to intensify following the halving that occurred back in May 2020.
500.com Acquires More Bitcoin Mining Machines
According to Asia Times, 500.com has announced the procurement of 5,900 Bitcoin mining rigs for 55.2 million yuan (about $8.5 million). The new inventory is expected to be delivered before the end of the Summer.
As part of the purchase, the Chinese sports lotto company agreed to pay a performance bond to the tune of 2,000 yuan (~$310) for the first 5,000 rigs. This payment schedule rolls up to almost 10 million yuan (around $1.5 million) in total.
Apart from the 5,900 rigs, the company also has a planned outlay for 10,000 additional Bitcoin mining machines scheduled for 2021. However, this part of the inventory expansion is subject to product availability.
If 500.com successfully acquires all 15,900 rigs, the company’s Bitcoin mining capacity will grow by about 1,000 petahashes per second.
The Bitcoin mining space is currently facing a shortage of rigs amid the ongoing global chip scarcity. Indeed, crypto miner maker giant Bitmain has seen its products sold out through August with rig prices also rising to significant premiums.
Apart from the Bitcoin mining space, other industries have also been impacted by the global semiconductor shortage. Automobile manufacturers like Ford have been forced to shut down plants as the chip scarcity continues to bite harder.
On the Bitcoin mining scene, Chinese miners are reportedly being squeezed out by the North American counterparts for the few available rigs. Indeed, mining operations in North America have been aggressively acquiring new inventory, expanding their Bitcoin mining presence which could significantly reduce China’s global hash rate dominance.
According to data from the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CBECI), China still accounts for over 65 percent of the global hash rate distributions. Outside China, the U.S. is the next major Bitcoin mining hub owing to the massive expansion of establishments in the country.
As previously reported by Nasdaq-listed Bit Digital, Inc. swapped 4,000 shares for mining machines back in November 2020. Meanwhile, countries like Iran are seeing significant government involvement in the Bitcoin mining arena as a way of generating revenue amid ongoing economic difficulties.