MicroStrategy’s Massive Premium Implies Bitcoin Price of $122k, says Investment Firm Short on MSTR
The price of the MSTR shares have crashed 60% in less than a month since company executives started selling some stocks.
Bitcoin bull Michael Saylor, the co-founder, and chief executive officer of publicly-traded business intelligence company MicroStrategy, has been betting big on the leading digital currency.
The company bought another 205 BTC on Friday, bringing its total holdings to 91,065 BTC, representing 0.488% of Bitcoin’s circulating supply.
While the company continues to bet more and more on Bitcoin, its share prices are not feeling the same bullishness. MSTR share prices have crashed nearly 60% in less than one month from their all-time high of about $1,314 on Feb. 9.
On Friday, the MSTR shares fell as low as $537 before recovering to $620. Interestingly, MSTR is suffering from losses more than Bitcoin.
During the same period, the price of Bitcoin went from $46,500 to an ATH of $58,300, only to see a correction of 26% to almost $43k. Currently, BTC is consolidating in the $40k-$50k range.
The losses in the cryptocurrency market have actually been the result of the weakness in the stock market, which has been reacting to the rising bond yields. “The bond market selloff is showing some signs of stability, and that could mean the bitcoin pullback is nearing its end,” said Edward Moya, a senior market analyst at OANDA.
In related news, MicroStrategy President and CFO Phong Le sold 10,000 shares of MSTR on March 2nd, at an average price of $802.46 a share. Company CTO Timothy Edwin Lang sold 10,000 shares of MSTR stock on Feb 22nd.
Moreover, General Counsel Wei-ming Shao sold 5,000 MSTR shares on March 3rd. Director Jarrod M Patten and Stephen X Graham also sold 1,150 shares and 2,000 shares respectively on Feb. 24.
Distorted from fundamentals
The traditional media and funds have voiced their opinion against the company's increasing Bitcoin bet. This week, WSJ called MicroStrategy's Bitcoin buying spree “irresponsible,” based on Marc Lichtenfeld, chief income strategist at The Oxford Group’s view, who calls Bitcoin a “very speculative and volatile asset.” He said,
“I have never seen a company do this. This is beyond the excesses I have seen during the dot-com boom, and I think it makes them very, very vulnerable.”
According to Lichtenfeld, MSTR shares are “completely distorted from (its) business fundamentals” and simply linked to Bitcoin.
Another criticism came from investment management firm Bireme Capital which published its Q4 2020 Investor Letter, revealing that it is short on MicroStrategy, declaring $450 as its fair value.
The fund that had a net return of 47.1% for the year ending 2020 said MicroStrategy has a massive premium, its market cap increasing by $9 billion on a ~$3b windfall on its bitcoin purchases.
According to Bireme Capital’s calculations, MSTR’s current share price implies a bitcoin price of $122,000. The letter reads,
“MicroStrategy (MSTR) is the latest firm with shrinking revenues and negligible profits to pivot to the blockchain. Rather than attempt to start a cryptocurrency business, MSTR pivoted in the most straightforward way possible: it simply bought hundreds of millions of dollars worth of bitcoin overnight. In one light, this is an utter abdication of all the principles of corporate finance. Why not return the money to shareholders, who can decide for themselves whether or not they want to own bitcoin? But in another light, this was a brilliant end run around the SEC, who has been denying bitcoin ETF proposals le and right for years. MSTR went from being a mere stagnant software business to the de facto bitcoin ETF.”