The twenty one fattest bitcoin mining companies – Business Insider

The twenty one companies that control bitcoin

The race is on. Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Photos

Flashy startups like Coinbase, Circle, Blockchain, and BitPay are some of the most famous companiesВ inВ bitcoin.В

But arguably more significant are the miners — individuals and organisations who form the core backbone of bitcoin, ensuring the digital currency’s integrity.

Bitcoin runs on a blockchain, a decentralised and public ledger of every transaction made on the network.В By suggesting processing power towards this, users get a chance to win bitcoin — creating an arms race of miners scrambling to assemble ever-more sophisticated and powerful equipment to “mine” fresh bitcoin.

This decentralisation has massive benefits, but also comes with fresh risks: Right now, if just the top three organisations joined compels they would control 51% of the network — providing them the power to rewrite the blockchain as they see fit.

Some individuals go it alone; others join open “pools” where they combine their resources to improve their odds; some larger companies also have mining efforts. While the #1 spot can switch from week to week, we have ranked the fattest mining companies using data covering August five to August twelve fromВ bitcoin network analysis company Blocktrail.

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21. Unknown Entity — 0.1%

An “unknown entity” is presently responsible for 0.1% of the hash power on the bitcoin network. It could be a private organisation calmly building a mining operation, or a public pool that is flying below the radar.

20. Unknown Entity — 0.28%

Another unknown entity.

Nineteen. — 0.47%%

This relatively petite pool was created in two thousand eleven by programmer Forrest Voight. It claims to be “the most semitransparent mining pool on the planet” because it distributes all pool data for the public to view. As of September 2014, it had mined more than 78,000 bitcoin (ВЈ13.Four million or $20.9 million at current prices).

Eighteen. Solo CKPool — 0.47%

CKPool is a public pool created by an Australian anaesthetist and programmer, Con Kolivas, and bitcoinerВ “Kano.”

It was launched in September 2014, andВ for risk-takers, it also offers a separateВ “solo” pool. This means that users will pool their resources to find a bitcoin block swifter than they would alone — but only the user who detects the block gets any prize.

This entry refers to the soloВ pool specifically.

17. Unknown Entity — 0.66%

A third unknown entity, this one is responsible for a little overВ 0.5% of the total hash power.

16. Kano CKPool — 0.66%

CKPool is a public pool created by an Australian anaesthetist and programmer, Con Kolivas, and bitcoinerВ “Kano.”

It was launched in September 2014, andВ for risk-takers, it also offers a “solo” pool. This means that users will pool their resources to find a bitcoin block swifter than they would alone — but only the user who detects the block gets any prize.

This is the standard pool.

15. BitMinter — 0.76%

A veteran pool, BitMinter was created in two thousand eleven by Geir Harald Hansen. According to BitcoinWiki, a digital currency wiki, it has servers in the US and inВ Europe.

14. 8baochi — 0.85%

Bitcoin is flourishing in China, and 8baochi isВ one of the smaller China pools to make the list. It also offers litecoin mining, an alternative, less popular digital currency.

13. BitClub Network — 1.33%

Unlike some other pools, BitClub Network does not disclose its founders, telling only that it is “run by a team of programmers, digital mining experts and entrepreneurs who have come together with MLM experts from around the world.”

MLM stands for Multi-Level Marketing — a referral system whereby a user gains bonuses for each fresh user they bring in, who then gains bonuses for each fresh user they bring in, and so on. MLMs can be controversial because they resemble pyramid schemes, but BitClub Network insists that it is legitimate and not a “Ponzi Scheme.”

For some users, itВ works as a cloud mining pool: Users don’t have to own their own hardware, just pay to rent some possessed by BitClub. Miners with their own equipments can also join the network, however.

12. Unknown entity — 1.42%

This fourth, largest unknown entity is behind more than 1% of the network’s total hashing power.

11. Unknown — 1.9%

This is everything else on the network that is unknownВ andВ that managed to mine a block in the last week. (Other smaller pools and individuals that did not manage to of course also exist.)В

This could include miners attempting to go it alone, or pools andВ organisations too puny to register by themselves.

Ten. — 1.99% was launched in July two thousand thirteen and last year gained some notoriety through its success: In June 2014, it shortly gained control of 51% of the entire bitcoin network. This majority control is arguably the thickest threat to bitcoin, and demonstrates the power of miners when they get too large — it could have rewritten the blockchain however it eyed fit, potentially fatally unstabilising the network in the process.

Since then, its hash power has dropped off: It now sits just under 2%.В Londoner Jeffrey Smith, the company’s CIO, acts most frequently as its spokesperson. It also operates, a bitcoin exchange.

9. Twenty one Inc. — Trio.79%

21 made sways in March two thousand fifteen when it announced it had raised $116 million (ВЈ74 million) — making it the best-funded bitcoin startup ever. Investors included top Silicon Valley VC fund Andreessen Horowitz, where twenty one CEO Balaji SrinivasanВ also works as a fucking partner.В

This mammoth round came despite powerful secrecy about what the company was even attempting to do. When it exited stealth mode in May, it announced what many had already suspected: That it is attempting to embed bitcoin network hardware into consumer goods.В

21 doesn’t suggest a public pool, and its chips are not yet available, but its own private hardware presently makes up a little underВ 4% of the network.

8. Slush — Four.08%

Launched in November 2010, Slush Pool is the world’s oldest public mining pool, and remains prominent today. Its formal name is Bitcoin Pooled Mining.

In real life, Slush isВ Marek Palatinus, a programmer from the Czech Republic. The pool is possessed by SatoshiLabs, which also runs a number of other digital currency projects.

7. KnCMiner — Four.27%

KnCMiner is a Swedish mining hardware company.В It hasn’t been worth mining bitcoin using standard consumer computer hardware for years because of the kind of processing power involved; the tremendous majority of ordinary members of public pools will have bought hardware from companies like KnCMiner.

It raised a $15 million (ВЈ9.6 million) Series B in February two thousand fifteen led by Accel Playmates. It boasts its green credentials on its website , and has data centres Sweden, with expansions planned forВ Iceland and Finland.

6. Eligius — Four.83%

Eligius is a North American public pool launched in April 2011. According to CryptoCoinsNews, its operator Luke Dashjr (or “Luke-Jr”) is a Catholic who has previously written religious messages onto the blockchain, the public ledger of all bitcoin transactions.

Saint Eligius, the pool’s namesake, is the patron saint of goldsmiths and coin collectors.

Five. BW Pool — 7.68%

BW Pool is another Chinese pool. It has almost no publicity in the English-speaking world, despite its size. It made a uncommon public statement in July 2015, when it co-signed a Reddit post in favour of an increase in block size — an ongoing technical question the bitcoin community is debating.

Four. BTC China Pool — 13.74%

A relative newcomer to the scene, the BTCChina Pool is one of the thickest players around despite only launching at the end of 2014. This growth is down to the fact that BTC China itself is one of China’s largest bitcoin exchanges, and also offers a number of other digital currency solutions.

It was founded in 2011, and is presently led by Bobby Lee, who became CEO after purchasing the exchange in 2013.

Trio. BitFury — 16.4%

BitFury is the best-funded mining hardware company in the business, raising $20 million (ВЈ12.8 million) in July 2015. It was, CoinDesk notes, its third round in two years, and it has now raised $60 million (38.Four million) in total.

The startup is headed up by Valery Vavilov, originally from Latvia. It does not operate a public pool, but has private mines in Finland, Iceland, and the Republic of Georgia. Despite its prominence in the mining industry, Vavilov insists that “we are not a mining company, I don’t like the word mining.”

Instead,В he told CoinDesk, “we’re a technology company, but we’re focused on bitcoin now. Our vision in the next three to five years is to stir into different areas where computing power is valuable. We plan to expand into other fields of skill where humanity needs a lot of computing power.”

Two. DiscusFish/P2Pool — 16.49%

Officially known as F2Pool, this Chinese pool is also known as DiscusFish due to its logo — a discus fish. It is operated by Wang Chun and Mao Shihang, “two Chinese technology enthusiasts,” Chun told CoinDesk in September 2014. A spokesperson told Business Insider that the pool wields no hardware itself; 100% of its hash power comes from users.

In July this year, F2Pool generated the largest bitcoin transaction ever in order to clear up a spam attack of “dust” or lil’ bitcoin transactions evidently intended to clog up the network.

1. AntPool — 17.82%

AntPool is run by Bitmain, a Chinese mining hardware company headquartered in Beijing. It boasts that its technology accounts for 56% of global bitcoin miners. It also claims to be the largest cloud miner in the world.

BitmainВ was launched in Q1 2013, and co-founder Jihan WuВ is the CEO.

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