Iris Energy Raises 2022 Hashrate Estimate to 4.3 EH/s

The construction of the bitcoin miner's Texas site may be delayed as the firm removed completion estimate.

AccessTimeIconJun 22, 2022 at 8:54 a.m. UTC
Updated Jun 22, 2022 at 5:30 p.m. UTC

Eliza Gkritsi is CoinDesk's crypto mining reporter based in Asia.

Bitcoin (BTC) mining firm Iris Energy (IRIS) has increased its hashrate expectation to 4.3 exahash/second (EH/s) for the year.

  • Previously, the Australia-based miner said its hashrate would increase to 3.7 EH/s of computing power by year end. The increase is because its site in Mackenzie, British Columbia, will be completed ahead of schedule, the firm said in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday.
  • Iris Energy was also planning to finish the construction of data centers in Childress County, Texas, that would house 3 EH/s of computing power by the end of 2023, and energize them in the first quarter of 2023, according to a May 11 investor presentation.
  • In the latest filing, Iris Energy hinted that its Texas site may be delayed. The firm removed its estimates for the completion of the Texas site, saying instead that it would "continue preparatory construction activities" so that it can "scale up" once market conditions improve. "We expect to continue work at Childress to preserve optionality going into 2023 for our 600MW project in Texas," Lindsay Ward, the company's president, said in the filing.
  • A company spokesperson repeated the language of the filing when CoinDesk asked to clarify if the Childress facility is on hold. "Iris Energy's contracting and procurement strategy in relation to construction activities at Childress allows us to take a prudent pause on major capital expenditure activities without incurring significant additional financial costs," the spokesperson said.
  • The bitcoin miner has already made a $130 million payment on mining rigs over the expected 4.3 EH/s, and has a contract to buy $400 million of machines from Bitmain.
  • Iris Energy also decided not to pursue any financing options to maintain "balance sheet flexibility" as market conditions deteriorate. Many miners have used at-the-market equity offerings and loans to fuel their expansion as they hold bitcoin. On Tuesday, Bitfarms said it sold 3,000 BTC for $62 million in part to reduce a rolling credit facility from Galaxy Digital.
  • Iris Energy will have $93 million in cash after it pays for the expansion to 4.3 EH/s and will continue to sell its bitcoin "on a daily basis," according to the Tuesday filing.
  • The company said it has no "corporate-level debt" because all of its indebtedness comes from limited recourse financing that sits in the balance sheets of its wholly owned subsidiaries, meaning loan defaults won't force the entire company to liquidate.
  • The firm has $41 million in debt, according to data compiled in a June 14 investors' note by B. Riley.

UPDATE (June 22, 09:24 UTC): Adds comment from Iris in fourth bullet.

UPDATE (June 22, 09:41 UTC): Iris amends comment to add dropped words "on major capital expenditure activities ".

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Eliza Gkritsi is CoinDesk's crypto mining reporter based in Asia.

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Eliza Gkritsi is CoinDesk's crypto mining reporter based in Asia.

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