Editor’s note: This article is from the micro-channel public number “wired Insight” (ID: lxinsight), Author: pine sunny, 36 krypton release authorized.
Text / Qingsong Xiangyang
Editor / Shui Sheng
Bitmain was once known as the “Big Mac” in the virtual currency world and is the world’s largest mining machine manufacturer.But around the battle for leadership, the company’s co-founders Wu Jihan and Zhan Tuan used an upgraded internal battle to push Bitmain to the forefront.
At 11 a.m. on May 8th, at the 52nd floor of the Administrative Service Center, Haidian District, Beijing, in front of Window 52, dozens of unidentified persons appeared on the scene when one of the founders of Bitmain, Zhan Ketuan, was obtaining a company business license.The staff forcefully took the business license.
Caijing.com quoted informed sources as saying that this group of unidentified people was directed by Liu Luyao, a high school classmate of Bitmain’s other founder Wu Jihan and Bitmain’s current CFO.
Competing for the business license site, Tuyuan Caixin
The Caixin reporter recorded the dispute at the scene:
“According to the decision of the Beijing Haidian District Judicial Bureau, it is currently necessary to issue a business license to the company’s registered legal representative and to issue a repayment of the (previous) business license.” The staff of the Haidian District Market Supervision Administration just read the notice,When the business license was to be handed over to the Jenke group, the people in Bitmain suddenly took away the business license.
“The business license belongs to the company’s property, how can it be given to individuals!” Caixin reported that at the scene, Liu Luyao said so.
As a result, this internal struggle that started at the end of 2018 and centered on the legal representative of Bitmain, whose core person is Bitmain co-founder Wu Jihan and Zhan Ketuan, was culminated.
This storm is also continuing to ferment.On May 9th, some media reported that a person who had just left Bitmain said that Bitmain employees were re-signing a labor contract with a new company located in Chongqing, Chongqing Siyuan Continental Technology Co., Ltd. HR said they could keep BeijingThe age of Bitmain.
According to the Pingwest Pinwan report, Chongqing Silicon Continent was established on March 24, 2020. It is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BitmaintechPte.ltd. The legal representative is Liu Luyao.
As early as April 28, Bitmain announced that the payment account of the official shopping mall of the Ant Mining Machine had been changed to Chongqing Silicon Original Continental Technology Co., Ltd.
Liu Luyao is a legal person of Chongqing Silicon Original Technology Co., Ltd.
Behind the two sides’ unremitting efforts to compete for business licenses, it is actually a battle for control of Bitmain.
Wu Jihan and Zhan Ketuan have shown their incompetence in this power struggle.Behind the infighting, Bitmain’s already tortuous listing road was also marked with a question mark.
As early as September 2018, Bitmain submitted a prospectus to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, and the listing failed.
However, in October 2019, some media reported that Bitmain once again submitted a listing application to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in secret, planning to go public in early 2020, and the sponsor was Deutsche Bank.
However, as of now, no further news about the listing has been revealed, and after this infighting upgrade, it is foreseeable that Bitmain’s road to listing may still be in the foreseeable future.
Jenke group “return” dream broken?
Before we further understand this infighting, let us first take a look at the roles that Wu Jihan, Zhan Ketuan and Liu Luyao each play in Bitmain.
According to a daily economic news report, Wu Jihan graduated from Peking University and worked as an analyst and investment manager in a venture capital company before founding Bitmain.In 2011, he accidentally came into contact with bitcoin and became the moderator of bitcoin talk in Chinese. He was the first person in China to translate the Satoshi Bitcoin white paper into Chinese.
Zhan Ketuan graduated from the Chinese Academy of Sciences. After graduating from graduate school, he has been engaged in integrated circuit design work and deeply immersed in the chip industry.
As for the marginal figure of this power struggle, Liu Luyao, Wu Jihan’s high school and university classmates, was invited by Wu Jihan to join Bitmain as CFO and is responsible for the company’s listing related work.
According to the statistics of the enterprise, before October 2019, Wu Jihan served as the executive director and legal representative of Bitmain, and Zhanke Tuan served as the company’s director and manager.
However, on November 5, 2019, Jenke Tuan no longer held the position of company manager, and Wu Jihan assumed this position.From the point of view of the change of industry and commerce, after this, the Jenke group will no longer hold any positions in Bitmain.
In January of this year, Liu Luyao was added as the general manager of Bitmain, and Wu Jihan continued to serve as the company’s executive director.
Among these changes, it is worth noting that the change of the legal representative of Bitmain is extremely frequent.This is also one of the focal issues in the battle for business licenses.
On October 28, 2019, the legal representative of Bitmain was changed from Zhan Ke Tuan to Wu Jihan; on January 2 this year, Wu Jihan was changed to Liu Luyao; but by May 8th, this candidate was again changed by LiuLu Yao changed to the Jenke group.
Change information of Bitmain’s industry and commerce
In fact, before Liu Luyao snatched the company’s business license, Jenke Tuan had been “expelled” from Bitmain in October 2019.
The main body certified by Weibo as “Hong Kong Bitmain” issued an announcement on May 8 that Beijing Bitmain Technology Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as “Beijing Bit”) is a wholly foreign-owned enterprise, and the sole shareholder is Bitmain Technologies Limited (registered in Hong Kong, China).Hereinafter referred to as “Hong Kong Bit”).
The announcement pointed out that on October 28, 2019, the only shareholder of “Beijing Bit” “Hong Kong Bit” made a shareholder decision to remove the executive director of the Zhanke Group.As well as the qualification of legal representative, “Beijing Bit” and Zhanke Tuan canceled the labor contract.
Bitmain’s official statement, the source of the picture “Hong Kong Bitmain” Weibo
In other words, at present, the Jenke regiment does not hold any position in Bitmain.
Why is it that the Jenke group obtains the company’s business license?The company’s investigation revealed that what happened to the Jenke group is currently the legal representative of Bitmain?
The reason is that, after being “evicted” for half a year, the Zhanke regiment has been trying to return. If it were not for Liu Luyao’s cross-cutting hands, after obtaining a new business license, the Zhanke regiment will once again become the executive director and legal representative of Bitmain.
Phoenix Technology reported that in the past six months, the Jenke Group has continuously filed lawsuits and administrative reviews with local courts and industrial and commercial departments overseas and domestically, trying to regain control of Bitmain.
Zhan Tuan Tu Tuyuan his personal Weibo
The administrative reconsideration issued by the Beijing Judicial Bureau shows that on November 7, 2019, the applicant Zhan Ketuan was dissatisfied with the respondent ’s changes in registration made by the Beijing Haidian District Market Supervision Administration on October 28, 2019, and submitted to the Haidian District People ’s GovernmentTo apply for administrative reconsideration, to withdraw the administrative actions made by the respondent that permitted the change of the registration items of Beijing Bit ’s legal representative and executive director.
After verification by the Haidian District People ’s Government, the Beijing Judicial Bureau decided that the registration of Beijing Bitmain ’s legal representative changed twice (October 28, 2019, Beijing Bitmain ’s legal representative was changed from Zhan Ke Tuan to Wu Jihan, Beijing, January 2, 2019The legal representative of Bitmain was changed from Wu Jihan to Liu Luyao), and the registration status of Beijing Bitmain in the market supervision department should be restored to October 28, 2019.
According to the data from Tianyan, before October 28, the Jenke regiment was the legal representative of Bitmain.
But Liu Luyao and Wu Jihan obviously did not accept this result, which is the direct reason for their business license.
In a chat record of the Bitmain employee group circulating on the Internet, Wu Jihan responded to the return declaration of the Zhanke group yesterday, with a tough attitude and fierce speech.Respectable, but he destroyed the company ’s upward momentum and destroyed the value of the company ’s billions of dollars. ”Wu Jihan said.
Not only that, in this chat record, the responses of “everyone don’t believe his gibberish” and “don’t counsel, just do” are also spoken by Wu Jihan.
Wu Jihan’s reply in the employee group, Tuyuan Network
Bitmain official also responded on Weibo that the public registration of the market supervision department showed that the Jenk Tuan was the registration error of Bitmain’s legal representative and seriously violated the provisions of the “Company Law”. Liu Luyao was the only legal and effective legal representative of the company.
“Janke Tuan does not hold any position in the company, nor is it authorized to obtain the company’s business license without the authorization of the company. On the contrary, only persons who have been authorized by the company to release the right are entitled to receive the company. The company is obliged to protect the company’s important assets from the company.Legally authorized infringement by unrelated persons, etc. “Bitmain responded to rumors in this way.
The occurrence of this incident also meant that the Jenke regiment’s journey back to Bitmain was difficult.
Wu Jihan and Jenke Tuan
The protagonists of Bitmain’s infighting are the two co-founders of Wu Jihan and Jenke Tuan.
Caixin.com reported that Wu Jihan graduated from Peking University School of Economics, has ideals and ideas for digital currency, and is good at marketing. Zhan Ketuan was a research and development project at the Information Technology Research Institute of Tsinghua University and was the “brain of technology” of Bitmain..One person is responsible for market, finance and listing, and the other is responsible for technology R & D and production.
Judging from the early development of Bitmain, the cooperation between the two has been quite effective.
The prospectus released by Bitmain in 2018 shows that its revenue increased from US $ 137 million in 2015 to US $ 2.518 billion in 2017, with a compound annual growth rate of 328.2%, and from the six months ended June 30, 2017.US $ 275 million, which increased to US $ 2.846 billion for the six months ended June 30, 2018, a year-on-year growth rate of 936.6%.
The Tianyanzha data also shows that in August 2017, July 2018, and August 2018, Bitmain completed USD 50 million in Series A financing, USD 290 million in Series B financing, and USD 440 million in B + financing.The momentum is good.
The history of Bitmain’s financing
In September 2018, Bitmain submitted a prospectus to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange to seek listing.
But only two months later, the contradiction between Wu and Zhan began to intensify, and evolved into a confusing power struggle.
The main differences between Wu and Zhan concentrated on Bitmain’s future strategy and layout direction.
A person close to Bitmain told All Weather Technology that Wu Jihan was very fond of the development of blockchain, hoping to lead Bitmain to the blockchain industry, but the Jenke group was not very willing to do BCH or blockchain. HeI also hope to transform Bitmain into a giant in the field of artificial intelligence.
Under the disagreement, the two invested heavily in their respective fields of optimism, but these investments did not bring a return to Bitmain in the short term.
In the second half of 2018, cryptocurrencies plummeted, and Bitmain’s performance also turned sharply. Prospectus data shows that in the third quarter of 2018, Bitmain lost about 500 million US dollars.
Since November 2018, Bitmain has launched a series of personnel adjustments.
On November 7, that year, except for Wu Jihan and Zhan Ketuan, Zhao Zhaofeng, Ge Yuesheng, and Zhou Feng, who had previously served as directors, all withdrew from the board of directors. Hu Yi said, who had previously served as a supervisor, also withdrew from the board of supervisors.
In this adjustment, the corporate legal person Zhan Ketuan changed from serving as chairman and manager to serving as executive director and manager, and Wu Jihan changed from director to supervisor.
Wu Jihan, Tuyuan Netease Technology
On December 17, the same year, the “1217 storm” broke out in Bitmain.On this day, Bitmain held an executive meeting and announced that Zhanke Tuan would be the company’s chairman, Wang Haichao would be the company’s CEO, and Wu Jihan would step down from all positions.
Regarding the reasons for Wu Jihan’s withdrawal, it is generally believed that the hard fork of BCH (new currency forked from Bitcoin) led by Bitmain led to a significant depreciation of BCH, and Bitmain held a large amount of BCH assets, which directly led toBitmain’s listing was blocked.
However, some people close to Wu Jihan told Interface News that Wu Jihan was very affectionate about Bitmain and left because Jenke Tuan has abolished Wu Jihan from the core business.
After leaving Bitmain, Wu Jihan and some core staff established a new startup company Matrixoort, focusing on blockchain-related businesses, including digital currency exchanges and mining pools.
After this incident, according to interface news reports, many Bitmain employees believed that the conflict between Wu Jihan and Zhan Ketuan had been completely resolved. After the “peaceful separation”, the two also agreed not to interfere with each other’s company.
But no one thought that Wu Jihan was planning a bigger “coup.”
In 2019, Bitmain’s cash flow pillar mining machine business began to decline.
A former Bitmain employee told Interface News that the price of the company’s main ant mining machine was much higher than that of its competitors. In addition, due to the cold winter of the currency circle, many machines in the hoard could not be sold.”The market share of ant mining machines reached 70% during the peak period, and I don’t know if there is 50%. The market share of Shenma mining machines has risen quickly, and it has now accounted for 40%.” The above-mentioned sources said that competitors are also constantly eating bitcoin.The market share of the mainland mining machine.
On October 29, 2019, Wu Jihan returned to Bitmain and staged a Jedi “overturn show”. Wu Jihan issued an internal letter to employees, saying that the removal of Chairman Jenke Tuan from Bitmain “immediately takes effect.”
“I must come back to rescue this company and pull the company on the edge of the cliff.” Wu Jihan said this at the general meeting held that day.
It is worth noting that when he was dismissed, the Zhanke delegation also exhibited at the Shenzhen Expo.It was not until November 7 that he first spoke in the circle of friends, “Bitmain is our child, I will try my best to protect her! I will take up legal weapons, so that all attempts to hurt and use Bitmain cannot succeed!”
But at this time, the Jenke regiment has fallen into a completely passive situation.
After Wu Jihan returned, he first expelled the head of Bitmain’s HR (the original Huawei HR introduced by Jenke Tuan at the end of 2018), re-appointed the trust HR head Suo Chao, and then announced a salary increase for all staff to win the hearts of the people.
Not only that, two months after Wu Jihan officially returned, Bitmain ushered in a wave of layoffs, and the AI team previously led by the Zhanke regiment was the hardest hit.
According to the Odaily Planet Daily report, the Bitmain AI team was cut from 360 to about 100 in this adjustment, and the AI teams in Chengdu, Wuhan, Shanghai, and Shenzhen are nearly destroyed.
The isolated and helpless Zhanke regiment was expelled from the bit continent by their good brothers.After repeated attempts to return, a business license was robbed on May 8.
With the twists and turns of listing, where will Bitmain go?
Outside of infighting, Bitmain’s listing process has been frustrated repeatedly.
The first application for listing was in September 2018. The prospectus submitted by Bitmain to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange has expired on March 26, 2019. According to the rules, Bitmain did not enter the listing within 6 months after submitting the prospectusAt the hearing stage, the listing application automatically lapses.
The listing application was resubmitted in late October 2019. At that time, there were media reports that Bitmain once again submitted a prospectus to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which planned to complete the listing in early 2020 and raise a maximum of US $ 500 million.But so far this application has no further information.
There may be many reasons for the unsuccessful listing of Bitmain. The blockchain industry has fallen into a cold winter and the digital currency industry is not good, which directly affects the production capacity of mining machines.At the same time, the situation of infighting and layoffs has also affected the external evaluation of Bitmain. It is difficult for Bitmain to want a successful IPO.
The Hong Kong Stock Exchange is also very cautious about mining machine companies.Li Xiaojia, president of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, mentioned at the 2019 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, “You have made billions of dollars through the A business in the past, but suddenly said that you will do B business in the future, but there has been no performance.Then I think that the A business model that you brought to the market was not sustainable. Then can you (continue) to do this business, can you still make this money? ”
Li Xiaojia did not mention Bitmain, but this paragraph fully reflects its current status.After experiencing early development, Bitmain, Jianan Yunzhi and other mining machine manufacturers have tried to transform their technology-based companies with the layout of AI business.AI to blockchain “business closed loop.
However, since the deployment of AI in 2016, Bitmain’s business has not been profitable.A lot of investment but no return.
In contrast, Jianan Yunzhi also applied for an IPO twice.In 2018, it tried to list in Hong Kong, but the final listing application ended in November.On October 29, 2019, Jianan Yunzhi once again submitted a prospectus for listing in the United States, and finally successfully listed.
However, the situation after Jianan Yunzhi’s listing is not easy to be optimistic.According to its 2019 results, the annual net loss reached 149 million US dollars.Recently, the American short agency Marcus Aurelius Value has issued a short report by Jianan Yunzhi.The report questioned Jianan Yunzhi’s ability to continue operations and distributor fraud.
For a long time, Bitmain is the largest mining machine manufacturer, Jianan Yunzhi can only be ranked second, but in the IPO, Bitmain is slower.
Under internal and external concerns, Bitmain’s dream of transforming AI has been shattered. Nowadays, the main mining machine business is not easy to be optimistic. Can Bitmain maintain its first position?
There is no shortage of magic stories in the currency circle. How will this farce of Bitmain finally end? Connected Insight will continue to pay attention.