Tesla’s bitcoin reserves have increased to nearly $2.5 billion, according to a new security filing released Wednesday.
As of March 31, the company’s investment in bitcoin was worth $2.48 billion, up from the $1.5 billion announced in February. When the company announced its initial investment, it also stated that it intended to accept bitcoin payments, potentially increasing its holdings.
Tesla’s stock was down around 1% in early trading Wednesday.
Tesla amassed its bitcoin holdings after selling some in the first quarter of the year. The company announced earlier this week that it earned $101 million from the sale of some of the cryptocurrency, helping it report its most profitable quarter ever.
On Monday’s conference call with investors, Chief Financial Officer Zach Kirkhorn discussed Tesla’s involvement in cryptocurrency and stated that the company plans to keep it long-term.
“Elon and I were searching for a way to store cash that wasn’t being used immediately, hoping to earn some interest while also preserving liquidity,” explained Kirkhorn, who was named Tesla’s official “master of coin” last month.
When Tesla revealed its bitcoin holdings in February, the cryptocurrency was trading at around $38,540 per coin, according to Coindesk records. By April 15, the digital coin had fallen to around $54,700 per coin from a high of $63,460 on April 15.
Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, came under fire after the announcement of the company’s sale of bitcoin for openly endorsing it — assisting in driving the price up and then selling.
Musk was credited with raising the prices of many cryptocurrencies, including dogecoin, prior to Tesla’s disclosure, by posting optimistic messages about them on Twitter.
Musk defended the transaction on Twitter Monday, saying, “I have not sold any of my Bitcoin.” Tesla sold 10% of its Bitcoin assets primarily to demonstrate the currency’s liquidity as an alternative to keeping cash on the balance sheet.”