The US Marshals Service has announced the next round of bidding for the bitcoins seized from convicted Silk Road operator Ross Ulbricht.
In addition to the 29,656 BTC seized from Silk Road’s servers, which were auctioned off last June, another 144,000 were seized from Ulbricht himself.
Like in the previous round, 50,000 BTC will be auctioned off, split into ten blocks of 2,000 BTC and ten blocks of 3,000 BTC. Barry Silbert’s 104-bidder syndicate won 48,000 BTC in the previous round, the other 2,000 going to venture capitalist Tim Draper. Draper was the sole winner of the 29,656 BTC in the first round. In both rounds, the prices offered in the winning bids were not disclosed.
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Based on a bitcoin price of roughly $235, the stash of 50,000 BTC is worth roughly $11,750,000 today. As prices have declined significantly in 2015, the amount is far lower than the total value of roughly $19 million auctioned in both previous rounds.
There was less hype during the second round relative to the first, likely for the simple reason that the event was no longer a novelty for the industry. Barring any unusual or unexpected developments, this round is likely to generate even less hype. Assuming the laws of market efficiency remain roughly intact, no bidder stands to profit markedly more than if it were to buy the bitcoins in a controlled manner on the open market.
One of the participants in this round will be Pantera Capital which is inviting syndicate bids. A 1% fee is charged on winning bids.
The auction will be held on March 5 with the winners notified the following day. Deadline for registration is March 2.