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Billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes caught up in cryptocurrency miner’s share market plunge

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Crypto carnage as Australian ‘green’ bitcoin miner’s share price suddenly plunges 95 percent – now the company once backed by Atlassian billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes is in jeopardy

  • Billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes owed an interest in bitcoin miner Iris Energy
  • The share price is down 94 percent since it was listed on the Nasdaq a year ago
  • The US-listed Sydney company has defaulted on loans to buy bitcoin-making machines

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Australian billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes has been caught up in the 94 percent share price drop of an environmentally conscious cryptocurrency miner.

Iris Energy, which promotes itself as a sustainable bitcoin miner, was worth $28 when it was listed on the US technology exchange Nasdaq last November.

But it is now down to just $1.68 a share as it cannot repay its debt needed to fund Chinese equipment.

Mr. Cannon-Brookes, co-founder of workplace software company Atlassian, owned shares in Iris Energy through his private investment company Grok Ventures.

The ultra-wealthy climate change activist invested in the Sydney-based company that markets its “100 percent renewable energy” for bitcoin mining — the process by which machines solve complex mathematical equations to create cryptocurrency.

Australian billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes has been caught up in the 94 percent share price plunge of a cryptocurrency miner (pictured left with former US Vice President and climate change campaigner Al Gore, and his wife Annie)

Australian billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes has been caught up in the 94 percent share price plunge of a cryptocurrency miner (pictured left with former US Vice President and climate change campaigner Al Gore, and his wife Annie)

Iris Energy, founded by former Macquarie Group banker brothers Daniel Roberts and Will Roberts, suffered a nosedive of 18 percent on Monday — a low of $1.55 per share — after it admitted that U.S. creditors owed $107.8 million ($A 159 million) in loan repayments used to buy cryptocurrency mining equipment.

China-owned Bitmain Technologies produces the machines Iris Energy uses to make bitcoin, but the Australian company has debt obligations to the New York Digital Investment Group (NYDIG) which finances these capital assets.

Iris Energy co-founder and CEO Daniel Roberts told the Nasdaq in a Nov. 2 update that it had “insufficient cash flow to meet debt financing obligations.”

“Resource-constrained equipment financing arrangements have been a focus for us recently,” he said.

“We remain committed to exploring ways in which we can enable the lender to recoup their capital investment, but we are also aware of the current market and that these arrangements are deliberately structured to mitigate potential impacts on the wider group. minimalize. during a prolonged downturn in the market.’

Daniel Roberts had said that “restructuring talks with the lender are still ongoing,” but he later stated that Iris Energy’s subsidiaries would not pay the debt.

Iris Energy co-founder and chief executive Daniel Roberts (pictured right in Florida with staff) told the Nasdaq in a Nov. 2 update that it had “insufficient cash flow to meet debt financing obligations.”

Iris Energy, which promotes itself as a sustainable bitcoin miner, was worth $28 when it was listed on the US technology exchange Nasdaq last November.  But it's now down to just $1.68 a share as it can't repay its debt needed to fund Chinese equipment

Iris Energy, which promotes itself as a sustainable bitcoin miner, was worth $28 when it was listed on the US technology exchange Nasdaq last November.  But it's now down to just $1.68 a share as it can't repay its debt needed to fund Chinese equipment

Iris Energy, which promotes itself as a sustainable bitcoin miner, was worth $28 when it was listed on the US technology exchange Nasdaq last November. But it’s now down to just $1.68 a share as it can’t repay its debt needed to fund Chinese equipment

Iris Energy’s market cap is down 94 percent to $84.12 million, from $1.4 billion at IPO in November 2021.

Cryptocurrencies are in crisis following the collapse this month of FTX, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, which wiped out co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried’s entire $16 billion fortune.

As recently as August, Daniel Roberts suggested that high inflation and government debt around the world made cryptocurrencies a wise investment.

“Each year those early bitcoiners look less and less crazy and more and more prescient,” he said.

Even before the latest cryptocurrency destruction, the Australian Financial Review estimated that Mr Cannon-Brookes’ personal wealth had fallen from $27.8 billion to $19.3 billion between May and June, just a month after he placed third in the rankings. annual AFR Rich List.

As recently as August, Daniel Roberts suggested that high inflation and government debt around the world made cryptocurrencies a wise investment.

As recently as August, Daniel Roberts suggested that high inflation and government debt around the world made cryptocurrencies a wise investment.

As recently as August, Daniel Roberts suggested that high inflation and government debt around the world made cryptocurrencies a wise investment.