Bitcoin miner Argo Blockchain became the latest big mining firm to reveal that it sold bitcoin last month.
The firm sold 637 bitcoin in June, at an average price of $24,500, according to a statement on Tuesday. Argo joins rivals including Bitfarms, Core Scientific and Riot, all of which uncharacteristically parted with bitcoin last month amid the bear market. These firms have historically held on to their mined bitcoins.
Besides using the proceeds to fund operating expenses and other areas of growth, Argo said it also used part of the money to pay down a bitcoin-backed loan from Galaxy Digital. Similarly, Bitfarms sold 3,000 BTC (about half of the Bitcoin holdings it had at the end of May) last month to pay part of a Galaxy loan.
The outstanding balance on Argo's loan is now $22 million. The company said that it had the necessary liquidity to avoid any "potential liquidation" even as Bitcoin prices continue to fall.
"We have seen positive results from our risk management strategy through which we have reduced the company's exposure to its BTC-backed loan, and we have hired a full-time derivatives trader," said Argo CEO Peter Wall in the statement. "We believe the company is well-positioned to navigate the current market conditions and further increase our efficiencies."
Argo had secured a loan of $20 million and another $25 million loan from Galaxy last year to help finance its Texas facility (Helios). It also has an additional $26.66 million loan from NYDIG.
Argo mined 179 BTC in June, up 44% from the previous month. That was mainly due to an increase in hash rate and greater uptime at the new Texas facility, the company said. As of June 30, the company had 1,953 bitcoin, including 210 bitcoin equivalents.
The mining firm brought in $4.35 million in revenue last month, which is about 12% up from June. Mining margins were lower in June (50%) compared to last month (62%). This was "driven primarily by the reduced price of Bitcoin and higher electricity costs at Helios," the company said.
Bitcoin lost about a third of its value in June, going from around $30,000 at the beginning of the month to $20,000. As of press time, bitcoin's price was roughly $20,800, according to TradingView.
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