US payments giant Square announced it had purchased an additional $170 million worth of Bitcoin (BTC) as a reserve asset, as the company announced its fourth-quarter earnings.
The company added 3,318 BTC to its treasury for $170 million, resulting in an average purchase price of $51,235 per BTC. The new purchase adds to the stash Square purchased in October.
“The investment is part of Square’s ongoing commitment to bitcoin, and the company plans to assess its aggregate investment in bitcoin relative to its other investments on an ongoing basis,” the company said in its earnings release. Square’s CEO, Jack Dorsey, has been an outspoken advocate of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.
“Bitcoin has the potential to be a native currency of the internet and we want to continue to participate and learn in a disciplined way,” said Square’s chief financial officer Amrita Ahuja.
Bitcoin and Ether Tumble After Record Highs
After setting a record high above $58,000 over the past weekend, Bitcoin hit a recent low of $44,964 before rebounding. It is now trading at $50,490, down 1.5% over the previous 24 hours. Ether (ETH), the second largest cryptocurrency by market cap, is now trading at $1,646, down 4.0%.
Square bought 4,709 BTC in October 2020, which is worth about $224 million currently. Total value of Bitcoin on its balance sheet is worth about $394 million.
Adding with the 3,318 BTC purchase recently announced, Square’s holding on Bitcoin increases to about 5% of the company’s cash and equivalents.
Additionally, Square’s peer-to-peer payments platform Cash App, increased monthly users 50% year-on-year to 36 million in December. Cash App’s success has been a main driver of the business, thanks in large part to Bitcoin-related transactions.
Companies are increasingly leaning into Bitcoin as it becomes more mainstream. Tesla announced earlier this month it bought $1.5 billion worth of Bitcoin. The move is to ensure “more flexibility to further diversify and maximize returns on our cash.”