Q1 earnings show Tesla sold off $272 million of its BTC purchase

After putting bitcoin on its balance sheet earlier this year, electric vehicle maker Tesla sold off $272 million of its holdings. Its Q1 2021 earnings report shows the sum under "proceeds from sales of digital assets."

Tesla first bought $1.5 billion in BTC in February of this year, according to a disclosure filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Crypto exchange Coinbase facilitated the purchase. The $272 million sale would leave at least $1.33 billion in BTC on Tesla's balance sheet according to the price at the Feb. 8 transaction. At this point that figure would be higher given price movements, but filing rules don't allow for Tesla to adjust the figure to the upside.

Last month, the firm also announced it would accept payment in bitcoin. Musk said Tesla would retain those payments in their digital asset form, and forego converting them to fiat.

In Tesla's earnings call, Chief Financial Officer Zach Kirkhorn said that "Tesla is watching how the market develops and listening to what our customers are saying but thinking about it from a corporate treasury perspective, we've been quite pleased with how much liquidity there is in the Bitcoin market." Kirkhorn also added that Tesla "believe, long term, in the value of Bitcoin, so it is our intent to hold what we have long-term and continue to accumulate Bitcoin from transactions from our customers as they purchase vehicles."