For many years, premier cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, was considered too volatile to be embraced by any serious business.
Today, the taboo has been well and truly broken. A number of major institutional investors buying up Bitcoin over the past two years.
Software company MicroStrategy opened the flood gates when it bought $425 million worth of Bitcoin in August and September 2020.
Others followed suit, including payments processor Block and EV manufacturer Tesla.
Yet, just as institutional adoption of Bitcoin appeared to be ramping up, the 2022 crypto crash struck.
As a result of the crash, the list of the companies with the biggest Bitcoin holdings has been shaken up, with some firms selling off part of their crypto stashes as the market slumped.
MicroStrategy, a prominent business analytics platform, has adopted Bitcoin as its primary reserve asset.
The firm has aggressively pursued its Bitcoin buying spree through 2021 and 2022, scooping up millions of dollars worth of the cryptocurrency even as the market slumped in 2022.
As of July 2022, MicroStrategy holds 129,699 BTC in reserve, equivalent to just over $2.8 billion—though the 2022 crypto crash has wiped billions of dollars of value from its crypto stash.
2.Galaxy Digital Holdings
Crypto-focused merchant bank Galaxy Digital Holdings holds 16,400 BTC, according to bitcointreasuries.org—worth just over $357 million at current prices.
Founded by Michael Novogratz in January 2018, the company has partnered with crypto firms including Block.one and BlockFi.
In September 2021, Galaxy Digital launched a joint proposal for a spot Bitcoin ETF; to date, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has only approved Bitcoin futures ETFs.
3.Voyager Digital LTD
Crypto brokerage Voyager Digital holds 12,260 BTC according to bitcointreasuries.org, worth around $267 million at current prices.
The firm aims to provide a one-stop shop for trading digital assets, and in May 2021 reported quarterly revenue of $60.4 million, up 16x from the previous quarter.
Voyager Digital became one of the most significant casualties of the 2022 crypto crash, however; after halting trading on its platform due to “current market conditions,” the company revealed a $661 million exposure to struggling crypto investment firm Three Arrows Capital, in both Bitcoin and USDC, and subsequently filed for bankruptcy.
Electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla joined the ranks of companies holding Bitcoin in December 2020, with an SEC filing revealing that the company invested “an aggregate $1.50 billion” in Bitcoin.
Tesla sold 10% of its Bitcoin holdings in Q1 2021; according to CEO Elon Musk, this was “to prove liquidity of Bitcoin as an alternative to holding cash on balance sheet.”
The company’s Bitcoin play followed months of speculation, after CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter to discuss the cryptocurrency.
In July 2022, the company revealed that it had sold “approximately 75%” of its Bitcoin in its Q2 2022 quarterly update, with its balance sheet showing sales from digital assets amounting to $936 million.
The sell-off leaves Tesla with 10,725 BTC in its portfolio (around $233 million), per bitcointreasuries.org, sending it plummeting from second place to fourth place in the rankings.
5.Marathon Digital Holdings Inc
Bitcoin mining company Marathon Digital, is also a large holder of Bitcoin, with 10,055 BTC in its corporate treasury (worth around $218 million at current prices).
Marathon Digital eventually aims to have over 199,000 Bitcoin miners churning out 23.3 EH/s a day by 2023, a 600% increase from its December 2021 hash rate. That month, the company placed a mammoth order of 78,000 Antminer mining machines from Bitmain, to be delivered throughout 2022.
Block, lit the fuse for institutional investment in Bitcoin with its October 2020 investment of $50 million in the cryptocurrency.
Since then, the payments company has continued to invest in Bitcoin, revealing that it had scooped up another $170 million worth in its Q4 2020 earnings statement.
With its holdings now amounting to 8,027 BTC, worth $174 million at current prices, Block hasn’t changed its tune on Bitcoin.
The company is also getting involved with Bitcoin technology, announcing plans to plans to develop a Bitcoin hardware wallet in July 2021, while in October 2021, Dorsey tweeted that the company was considering building Bitcoin mining rigs.
The company changed its name from Square to Block in December 2021, in an apparent reference to the blockchain technology that underpins Bitcoin.
The rebrand followed Dorsey’s announcement a week earlier that he was stepping down as Twitter CEO to focus on the payments company.
7.Hut 8 Mining Corp
Canadian crypto mining firm Hut 8 holds 7,406 BTC, worth $161 million.
In June 2021, the company was listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the HUT ticker, with the company’s SEC filing noting that it’s “committed to growing shareholder value by increasing the number and value of our bitcoin holdings.”
Like other crypto businesses, Hut 8 has seen its stock price tumble as a result of the crypto crash, from highs of $20 in November 2021 to under $3 in July 2022.
8.Riot Blockchain, Inc.
Another crypto mining outfit, U.S.-based Riot Blockchain holds 6,654 BTC, worth $144 million at today’s prices.
With its valuation surging from below $200 million in 2020 to highs of over $6 billion in 2021, the Nasdaq-listed company went on an aggressive expansion drive.
In April 2022, Riot revealed further plans to expand in Texas, with the announcement of a further one-gigawatt mining facility in Navarro County.
Following the 2022 crypto crash, CEO Jason Les told Yahoo Finance that Bitcoin mining will “continue to flourish in the United States,” and that “even though Bitcoin mining economics have gone down, there’s still tremendous opportunity here.”
Nevertheless, Riot’s share price has tumbled since its all-time high of over $70 in February 2021; as of July 2022, it was trading at under $7.
9.Coinbase Global, Inc.
Arguably the best-known crypto firm in this list, crypto exchange Coinbase went public in a direct listing on the Nasdaq in April 2021.
Ahead of its listing, in February 2021, Coinbase revealed that it held $230 million in Bitcoin on its balance sheet; by July 2022, its Bitcoin holdings had slipped to $98 million (4,482 BTC).
10.Bitcoin Group SE
Germany-based venture capital firm Bitcoin Group SE brings up the rear of the list, with relatively modest holdings of 3,947 BTC, worth just over $86 million at today’s prices.
Its investments include crypto exchange Bitcoin.de and Futurum bank, which merged in October 2020 to form “Germany’s first crypto bank.”