San Francisco-based Layer1 announced that it has raised $50 million from investors including Peter Thiel, Shasta Ventures, and various crypto industry leaders. The company will use the funding to build a bitcoin mining operation, which it claims to be the first bitcoin mining company in the U.S. “at scale.” Data shows that the top five known mining pools are all based in China.
Co-founder Alexander Liegl believes Layer1 will succeed because its focus will be on minimizing the cost of electricity.
“We expect our chips to be competitive for at least eight years now…you want to have your own chips in hand. We also have our own electricity substations: effectively that’s as close you can get to owning your own power plant,” he said, according to Yahoo Finance.
In other news, data from Hard Fork shows that bitcoin transaction fees have now exceeded $1 billion.
The milestone took place late last week and comes as the cryptocurrency remains popular with investors.
And Aliant Payments, a provider of merchant services and payment processing, announced it will be paying its employees part of their compensation package in a combination of bitcoin and litecoin.
“The FinTech industry is growing and changing rapidly, and this is a way for our employees to be a part of Aliant’s involvement in this shift to digital currency,” Aliant CEO Eric Brown said in an emailed press release. “Each member of the Aliant team now has a vested interest in cryptocurrency not just as something they work on in the office. The more our team utilizes digital currency, the better our customer user experience will be. This benefits Aliant as a company, and our employees as invested customers.”
“Adoption happens when you’re able to earn cryptocurrency, and then go on to spend it,” he added. “Being a leader in the crypto and payments space, the Aliant team is always working to educate merchants, and lead by example. I’m so grateful to work with this amazing team, and I can’t think of a better way to compensate them for the value they bring to our community.”