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Bitmain's dominance is being challenged

Bitmain's dominance is being challenged

The outbreak of the Coronavirus is having a significant effect on the Chinese economy. The Bitcoin mining market has not gone untouched either. Since the majority of Bitcoin's hash rate originates from China, the growth of the hash rate has been reduced. For some Chinese players, it has resulted in a loss of market share, while other players, less affected by the virus, have a chance to catch up now.

Since 2017, the market has been mainly dominated by a Chinese mining company called Bitmain. However, it now seems that this position is slowly shifting to MicroBT, also based in China. Over the course of 2019, MicroBT sold around 600.000 WhatsMiner M20's, this unit generates 60 terahashes per second. According to CoinDesk, MicroBT was responsible for half of Bitcoin's hash rate growth in 2019. To put this in perspective, this accounts to around 30% of the current total mining power of Bitcoin.

Losing momentum

While Bitmain still holds a comfortable 65% of the mining market, the company has had its setbacks the past year. A cut of 50% in its employee base and the firing of co-founder Micree Ketua Zhan are among them. Now in 2020, Bitmain and MicroBT are going head to head, Bitmain with its AntMiner S19 and MicroBT with their WhatsMiner M30. In 2019, the challenger was able to outperform Bitmain in terms of manufacturing and shipping. It will be interesting to see which of the two will cope best with the outbreak of the Coronavirus.