Wednesday 13 November 2019

Bitcoin 'founder' sells patent firm for $300m

Bitcoin mystery man Craig Wright
Bitcoin mystery man Craig Wright

Jeremy Wagstaff

A company built around the research of Craig Wright, who claims to have invented the bitcoin digital currency, has been sold to a private equity firm in a deal the company says is the biggest to date involving blockchain technology.

The deal turns the spotlight once again on Wright, a 46-year-old computer scientist who is the digital currency's most controversial figure. He hopes to remain central to the technology's future, telling Reuters the goal is to build bitcoin into a global "system with no ruler, no king".

"We will scale and grow bitcoin to become what it was envisioned to be," he said. "All I do is to help grow the use of bitcoin, and I want to see it in daily use by at least a billion people on-chain. We have the funds, the people and the technology to do this."

Malta-based High Tech Private Equity Fund SICAV said on Thursday that it has bought nChain Holdings, "the world leader in blockchain-centric research and development".

The fund is managed by Liechtenstein-based Accuro Fund Solutions, part of Zurich-based Accuro Group. It put no value on the deal but a person close to the deal said $300m (€238m) had been invested in nChain.

Reuters has previously identified nChain, formerly EITC Holdings, as Wright's vehicle for filing hundreds of bitcoin and blockchain-related patents. UK records confirm that the company has filed more than 80 bitcoin and blockchain-related patents. (Reuters)

Irish Independent

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