Alliance Resource Partners Mining Bitcoin With Surplus Electricity

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Alliance Resource Partners (ARLP), a leading coal mining company traded on the NASDAQ, has ventured into an innovative project by mining approximately $30 million worth of Bitcoin (BTC) using surplus electricity from its operations. During an earnings call, Cary Marshall, the company’s Chief Financial Officer, highlighted that ARLP seized the opportunity to utilize already paid-for electricity. Meanwhile, the company started this project far back in 2020.

Alliance Resource Holds 425 BTC in its Balance Sheet

The strategy behind this initiative revolves around leveraging excess power capacity within the company’s facilities. In other words, this approach allowed the company to capitalize on an existing resource without incurring additional costs, optimizing its operations and generating substantial value from its infrastructure.

ARLP’s decision made it hold about 425 BTC ($30 million) in its balance sheet at the end of the first quarter. The company experienced a significant rise of $7.3 million after considering the total property, plant, and equipment expenses. Interestingly, this great news brought about a surge in ARLP’s stock by 5%, exceeding the company’s revenue estimates.

However, ARLP’s decision to tap into surplus electricity underscores a strategic adaptation to evolving market conditions, where digital assets like Bitcoin have become increasingly prominent. It is worth noting that the company also rents out its excess capacity to other Bitcoin miners. Looking ahead, ARLP’s Bitcoin mining project sets a precedent for other energy-intensive industries to explore similar opportunities.

Bitcoin Miners in Profit

The surge in profitability is attributed to Bitcoin’s sustained market price, with the cryptocurrency consistently trading above $60,000 throughout March, reaching an all-time high of over $73,000 mid-March.

This price surge significantly boosted miner revenues, with the vast majority of earnings, $1.93 billion, coming from Bitcoin’s fixed block subsidy of 6.25 BTC per block. An additional $85 million was generated through transaction fees, reflecting fluctuating network demand.

Potential Shifts in Bitcoin Mining

Galaxy’s mining analysts foresee potential disruptions in the mining space following the halving, with up to 20% of Bitcoin’s currency hash rate projected to become inactive. The anticipated exodus of less efficient miners led to a reshuffling of the industry, leaving only the most efficient and well-capitalized mining operations operational.

Consequently, a decreased hash rate may prompt an adjustment in mining difficulty as the network seeks to maintain its target block production rate of approximately 10 minutes, further highlighting the dynamic interplay between mining economics and network stability.

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