Bitcoin Mining Pool ViaBTC Sells 'Epic' First Post-Halving Sat for $2.13M

The pool mined the first block after last week's halving, winning an "epic" sat in the process.

AccessTimeIconApr 25, 2024 at 4:06 p.m. UTC
Updated Apr 25, 2024 at 4:09 p.m. UTC
  • Mining pool ViaBTC won the race to mine the first satoshi after last week's halving, which it has now sold at auction for $2.13 million.
  • The Ordinals protocol allowed individual satoshis to be identified and traded, attaching value to particularly notable sats for the first time.

ViaBTC, the mining pool that mined the first block after the Bitcoin halving on April 20, sold the "epic" satoshi it contained for 33.3 BTC ($2.13 million).

An auction for the satoshi, or "sat," which has a face value of around $0.0006, ended at 16:00 UTC on crypto exchange CoinEx following a flurry of competing bids during the final few hours.

There was an expectation the first sat produced by the Bitcoin network after its fourth halving event on April 20 would attract considerable interest with some commentators estimating that it could fetch millions of dollars.

In the three previous halvings, there was little up for grabs other than bragging rights for mining the first block. However, the advent of the Ordinals protocol meant sats – the smallest denomination of bitcoin, equal to 0.00000001 BTC – could be identified and traded as if they were unique tokens, similar to non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on other networks.

Casey Rodarmor, the creator of Ordinals, formed a system for categorizing the rarity of sats. These could be "uncommon," the first sat of each block; "rare," the first one after Bitcoin's fortnightly difficulty adjustment; or "epic," the first after a quadrennial halving.

Edited by Sheldon Reback.


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Jamie Crawley

Jamie Crawley is a CoinDesk news reporter based in London.