KnCMiner Announces New Funding Round and 16 nm Chip
KnC Miner has announced that they have received an additional $15M in funding and have a new chip coming out in collaboration with long-time partner Alchip. This 16 nm chip is, according to the press release, one of, if not the, fastest ASIC chips to enter full scale production. KnC expects to be the first to the market with the next generation hardware.
KnC Miner has long worked with Alchip for their ASIC chip sets, including on the Neptune, KnC’s last SHA256 miner sold as a solution for individual miners. Since that time, KnC has transitioned to Cloudmining, but that doesn’t mean they don’t need the latest and most advanced hardware. KnCMiner claims to have invested over US $70M into its mining operations in the past 12 months. They also pledge to spend an additional US $150M in the next 18 months. KnC claims to have brought in over US $100M in total revenue since its inception.
The US $15M funding round is led by Accel Partners and a group of previous KnC investors. Accel Partners was founded in 1983 and have invested in technologies heavyweights such as Facebook, Dropbox, Rovio (of Angry Birds fame) and Spotify. This also isn’t their first Bitcoin venture, having already invested in Bitcoin exchange Circle.
Alchip has been making integrated circuits since 2003 and has been involved in Bitcoin ASICs for years now (about as long as possible in Bitcoin’s short history). They have experience with other SoC (system-on-chip) products, but seem focused on ASICs at present time. As mentioned, they have an extensive history with KnC Miners.
KnC Miner teased late last year that a 16 nm chip would be coming from them in 2015. Back then, the coin was teased with the codename “Solar” presumably because of its energy efficiency. KnC claimed back then that it would get 10 times the hashing power with the same power consumption. No mention of the chip’s capabilities or name were in the Press Release. CoinTerra had announced a pre-sale for a 16 nm chip, but has since filed for bankruptcy.
With the price of Bitcoin dropping earlier this year, the cloud mining space has seen significant changes. A few companies have come under fire or liquidated themselves like CoinTerra. Others have taken drastic measures to remain profitable. CEX.io paused their miner’s hardware and told me in an interview at CoinTelegraph that they estimate the price of Bitcoin needs to sit at US $230 for mining to be profitable. While the price sits slightly above of that currently, lowering power consumption while increasing hashing power is the only protection mining companies have against the price volatility in Bitcoin.
We will have more from KnC as it becomes available.
Image courtesy of kncminer.com