Aussie DeFi platform Maple Finance to launch $300m lending pool to help Bitcoin miners
Maple Finance, one of crypto’s major institutional DeFi lenders, has teamed up with Icebreaker Finance to launch a fully collaterised $300 million lending pool for struggling Bitcoin mining firms.
According to a Maple/Icebreaker announcement, and a thread of Maple tweets yesterday, the lending pool is geared towards providing secured debt financing to public and private “blue-chip” Bitcoin mining and digital asset infrastructure companies in North America, Canada and Australia.
Underlying loans in the new lending pool will reportedly last for 12 to 18 months with interest rates of up to 20%. Loans will be secured by physical and intellectual assets owned by the borrower and that can include Bitcoin mining rigs.
“Recent market headwinds have caused lenders to pull back, while traditional financing vehicles have been slower to engage this sector,” noted Sidney Powell, CEO and co-founder of Maple Finance, adding:
“Miners play an essential role in growing the crypto ecosystem and local economies, and we are proud to extend a new financing vehicle to direct capital where it is needed the most.”
— Maple (@maplefinance) September 20, 2022
For Maple, this marks the first time real-world assets will be used as collateral on the platform and, according to the announcement “the first step outside of the existing market-maker borrower set”.
Meanwhile, for investors, the opening of this pool is the first public opportunity to lend to mining and digital asset infrastructure providers.
Well, lots of people, notably including elements of the US government. But, as the ABC reported last week, there’s a crypto-mining data centre in South Australia’s Whyalla that’s doing its best to change that narrative.
Operated by Lumos Digital Mining, the 5 megawatt data centre will be used to mine Bitcoin and is set to run almost entirely on solar-generated electricity.
Commenting on the encouragingly green new Bitcoin enterprise, South Australia State Minister for Trade and Investment Nick Champion said:
“This is important for decarbonising blockchain, which is a very energy-intensive industry. I think it’s the beginning of a new economy out here at Whyalla.”
Champion further, er, championed the cause, positing the idea that this new set-up paves the way for other green crypto-mining operations.
“There will be demand for blockchain, but also carbon-neutral blockchain so I think we will see more and more facilities like this,” he added.