One of Canada’s largest cryptocurrency mining companies has acquired what will become their flagship data centre.
HIVE Blockchain Technologies is acquiring the issued and outstanding shares of Kolos Norway AS, a Norway-based data centre property that is powered by renewable energy. HIVE will pay $9.9 million USD for the acquisition.
“This is another major milestone in our continuing global expansion as a leading blockchain and cryptocurrency infrastructure company,” said Harry Pokrandt, CEO and director of HIVE. “Our vision is to scale the project in phases to be among the largest and most energy-efficient data centres in the world.”
The new Kolos centre will run on 100 per cent renewable energy. The main asset of the Norwegian company is a 64-hectare property located in Ballangen, Norway, about 225 kilometres north of the Arctic circle.
A prime reason for the acquisition is the new centres proximity to infrastructure that can provide massive amounts of renewable energy. The new data centre has the potential to expand to more than 1.0 gigawatts, or 1,000 megawatts of hydroelectricity consumption. As a comparison, HIVE’s current operations in Iceland and Sweden collectively represent only 44.2 megawatts of consumption. Close to 120 megawatts of that capacity will be available to HIVE within a year.
It can be incredibly difficult to estimate how much energy it takes, or how it costs to mine cryptocurrency.
In January, Elite Fixtures published a study detailing the average cost to mine a single bitcoin in almost every country in the world. Norway was relatively expensive, as it costs $7,784 to mine a single bitcoin in the country. In Canada, the cost is $3,965.
Still, these prices can fluctuate wildly. Companies like HIVE can strike deals with local utility companies to buy energy at a fixed cheaper price, and placing mining centres in very cold locations (even for Norway) means less spent on cooling infrastructure.
With the new Norwegian centre, HIVE will be able to plot long-term expansion. The local municipality in Norway strongly supports the expansion and is working closely with HIVE—whether this means deals with electricity costs remains to be seen, though it is almost certain HIVE has some sort of agreement in place.
In addition to this announcement, HIVE also appointed Marcus New as a new member to the company’s board of directors. New is the former CEO of Stockhouse Publishing, one of Canada’s leading financial communities.
Late last year HIVE opened a $34 million cryptocurrency mining centre in Sweden.