Major Japanese game developer Nexon has become the latest publicly-listed firm to make a significant investment into Bitcoin.
On April 28, Nexon announced it had purchased 1,717 BTC for roughly $100 million at an average price of $58,226 each after fees. The firm noted the investment represents less than 2% of its “total cash and cash equivalents on hand.” Owen Mahoney, Nexon’s president and CEO, stated:
“Our purchase of Bitcoin reflects a disciplined strategy for protecting shareholder value and for maintaining the purchasing power of our cash assets. In the current economic environment, we believe Bitcoin offers long-term stability and liquidity while maintaining the value of our cash for future investments.”
Mahoney added that Bitcoin is a “form of cash likely to retain its value, even if it is not yet widely recognized as such.”
Nexon’s investment follows a wave of large Bitcoin allocations from globally leading firms, with MicroStrategy kicking off the trend in August 2020 when it purchased 21,000 BTC for $250 million, followed by Square with a $50 million buy in October, and Tesla with a $1.5 billion investment at the end of 2020.
According to BitcoinTreasuries, 35 publicly-traded companies currently hold Bitcoin on their balance sheets.
Founded in 1994, Nexon describes itself as producing, developing, and operating online games and virtual worlds. The firm went public on the Tokyo Stock Exchange in December 2011, and currently operates more than 50 online games that can be played in more than 190 countries.
Nexon is not the first major Japanese firm to embrace crypto, with the country passing laws recognizing digital assets as legal currency in 2016.
Later that same year, top financial services firm SBI announced plans to launch a bank-backed virtual currency exchange, following investments in Ripple and local trading platform bitFlyer. Japan’s GMO Internet Group also announced a $3 million investment into Bitcoin mining in 2017.