Bitcoin maximalist and MicroStrategy co-founder Michael Saylor steps down as CEO. He will be executive chairman of the software company, focusing solely on Bitcoin. Saylor transferred responsibility to his deputy Phong Le, the company’s current president. Following his departure, the shares of the company (NASDAQ: MSTR) jumped almost 15% on August 3.
Key points to remember
- Michael Saylor, the chief executive of MicroStrategy, will step down following a loss of $917 million on Bitcoin investments.
- The bitcoin advocate wants to focus only on bitcoin.
- The software company’s president, Phong Le, will become the new CEO.
Bitcoin costs $1 billion in losses
The announcement came as the company released its second quarter results. According to the company’s financial statements, it lost $1.062 billion, primarily due to impairment charges of $917 million tied to his Bitcoin holdings.
As a bitcoin advocate, Saylor has always doubled down on his efforts to acquire bitcoin. Under his leadership, the company acquired $250 million in Bitcoin in 2020, and it reported holding $1.988 billion in Bitcoin as of June 30, 2022. The ongoing crypto winter, however, has caused the price of Bitcoin to plunge, which is now less than half of its peak price.
However, the love for Bitcoin is far from over
Microstrategy has announced that Micheal Saylor will take on new responsibilities as Executive Chairman, where he will focus more on Bitcoin. In his words, “As Executive Chairman, I will be able to focus more on our bitcoin acquisition strategy and related bitcoin advocacy initiatives, while Phong will be empowered as CEO to manage the overall operations of the company.” Saylor’s next step with Bitcoin is still unclear.
Saylor co-founded MicroStrategy in 1989, and in recent years has become famous for owning more bitcoins than any other publicly traded company. Given the pursuit mayhem in the crypto market and regulatory pressureit’s unclear how Saylor will use his new role to shake up the company’s cryptocurrency strategy.