Bitmain plans to deploy 90,000 Antminer S9 mining machines in China’s far-western region of Xinjiang, according to DeepChain on November 8. The Beijing-based global leader in crypto mining hardware-maker hopes the initiative will procure advantages in computing power for mining Bitcoin Cash (BCH). As part of the regular protocol maintenance, BCH hard forks twice a year, which makes all previous blocks or transactions in the blockchain invalid. However, amid differences in vision within the BCH community of developers this year, an upgrade is scheduled for November 15. The update will likely result in a schism of BCH into two separate blockchains and cryptocurrencies.
BCH was created in August 2017 from a hard fork of Bitcoin, when a group of developers wanted to increase the original blockchain’s block size limit. The current conflict began when Bitcoin SV, led by Nchain and pool operator CoinGeek, spoke out against Bitcoin ABC's upgrade proposal on the BCH blockchain's scalability. However, Bitmain agrees with Bitcoin ABC's plan and started preparation for any blockchain schism. Therefore, Bitmain reached out local mining farms in the coal-rich region of Xinjiang to ensure they will give the computing power it needs to mine the new cryptocurrency. Coal-rich regions present a strategic advantage to crypto mining firms, as hydropower stations, mostly in southwest China are unable to supply the sufficient power to meet their energy needs. Furthermore, on March 31, Bitmain’s pre-IPO investor deck showed that it was in possession of more than 1m BCH on its balance sheet, accounting for nearly 6% of the digital asset's circulating supply. According to Bitmain's draft IPO prospectus in late June, Bitmain held USD886.9m worth of digital assets, including Bitcoin and BCH, accounting for 28% percent of its total assets.