After months of fighting for control of the company, Bitmain founders Jihan Wu and Mikri Zhang came to an agreement. According to Chinese cryptocurrency expert Colin Wu, reported by several local media outlets, the parties agreed to compensate Jihan Wu for $ 600 million, with Zhang overseeing the cryptocurrency maker.
As part of the settlement, Wu will leave the company and take over the BTC.com mining complex, as well as the Bitmain offshore mining centers. Thus, Zhang will have the Antpool mining complex and Bitmain mining in China.
The agreement also stipulates that Zhan will be transferred to the Artificial Intelligence (AI) Division and the mining equipment manufacturer. Zhan will temporarily pledge his shares to raise the $ 600 million needed to buy Wu’s stake in the company.
Sequoia Capital will act as a mid-level regulator in negotiations for the agreement, which is expected to be approved at the next shareholders meeting scheduled for December 28. However, reports indicate that the existing terms of the agreement may change.
While this move represents a solution to an ongoing dispute, the split of Bitmain’s assets does not make both founders competitors in the future. As part of the agreement, Zhan will complete its first public offering in the United States by the end of 2022.
The company’s first attempt at listing expired in March 2019 and likely sparked tensions between the two founders. Both bosses resigned from the management of the company, but Wu returned in October and fired Zhan, which was unexpected.
A month later, Zhang announced his resignation from the company as an illegal lawsuit and threatened. Zhang later regained control of Bitmain’s Beijing office and stormed the building with security personnel in early June 2020.