- 33-acre site with private substation and access to ERCOT Load Zone South low-cost real-time energy market
- Recently purchased MicroBT liquid-cooling hardware will be deployed at the site
FRANKFURT, Germany, Dec. 11, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Today Peak Mining, a Northern Data Group company, and global Bitcoin miner, has announced the purchase of a 33-acre, 300MW mining data center site in Corpus Christi, Texas. This investment represents a significant step forward in Northern Data Group’s investment strategy, driving a substantial increase in Peak Mining’s hash rate and BTC production.
The first phase of the buildout is underway and will deliver 100MW of mining capacity which will ramp up from Q1 2024. The site benefits from access the low-cost power at the Load Zone South of the ERCOT real-time energy market delivering high mining profitability. The site also includes a private substation and strengthens Peak Mining’s diversified portfolio of locations across Europe, Canada, and the US.
The facility will house the latest liquid-cooled mining hardware from MicroBT, following Peak Mining’s recent USD 150 million purchase. Peak Mining has already secured an option for an additional $150m of MicroBT mining hardware, which is earmarked for the further expansion of this location to its full 300MW potential.
This purchase is in quick succession to the recently announced commencement of construction for a 30MW facility in Grand Forks, North Dakota, expected to be fully operational in Q1 2024. These two projects alone, will ensure that Peak Mining delivers its planned increase to over 7 EH next year. Both sites will benefit from much more efficient hardware, in preparation for the upcoming halving.
Saxet Infrastructure Group (“Saxet”) has been managing the pre-development of the site to date and will act as construction manager to oversee the build. The Saxet team brings a strong track record of project management and deep expertise with the construction of (renewable) energy infrastructure.
Niek Beudeker, Managing Director at Peak Mining, commented:
“We are excited to acquire this location, which offers a rare opportunity to quickly and substantively expand our mining capacity, ahead of next year’s halving. ERCOT remains one of the most attractive power markets for mining, providing low-cost power from largely renewable sources and the ability to actively participate in demand response programs.
“We look forward working with Saxet to complete this project and thereby expanding our footprint in the US. The site is well-located to attract local talent and achieve a quick time-to-market. With a more moderate climate it also allows for better cooling and mining efficiency compared to West Texas.”
Aroosh Thillainathan, Northern Data Group’s Chief Executive Officer, commented:
“Across all Northern Data Group companies, we are committed to identifying sustainable value accretive assets. This site in Texas meets these requirements with substantial opportunities for expansion in the near-future.
“This marks a landmark investment for Peak Mining as it scales its Bitcoin mining capabilities, further strengthening the Group’s overall position within the global High Performance Computing market.”
Steven Quisenberry, Chief Executive Officer at Saxet Infrastructure Group, commented:
“We are excited to support Northern Data’s expansion in the ERCOT market and specifically to welcome them to the Corpus Christi area. The combination of base load industrial demand and significant renewable resources creates a unique opportunity for their portfolio. This is a terrific example of one of the largest, most advanced liquid-cooled data centers in North America and we are proud to partner with Northern Data to bring their data center online.”
Northern Data Group was advised on the transaction by Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP (Legal Counsel), BitOoda Technologies LLC and Cohen & Company Capital Markets, a division of J.V.B. Financial Group, LLC (Finance and Strategic Advisory).
About Peak Mining
Peak Mining is powering the future of the Bitcoin network. Part of Northern Data Group, we deliver industry-leading operating and energy efficiency in Bitcoin mining through the latest hardware alongside innovative technology and infrastructure. With our mining heritage dating back to 2013, we’ve been innovating for over a decade and have been at the forefront of the industry ever since. Our high-quality infrastructure is purpose-built to power the mining network, and we’re driven to continuously find new efficiencies driving value for our investors. We’re delivering long term value in more responsible ways.
About Northern Data Group
Northern Data Group (ETR: NB2) is a provider of energy efficient High Performance Computing (HPC) infrastructure to businesses and research institutions, utilizing GPU and ASIC-based solutions. Our flexible compute power fuels innovation in our three core business divisions: Taiga Cloud; Ardent Data Centers; and Peak Mining. Through our HPC infrastructure, we pioneer ambitious computing innovation that drives progress in the AI, ML and Generative AI industries. Our partnerships with industry-leading manufacturers including Gigabyte, AMD, and NVIDIA are fundamental to the acceleration of innovation across sectors including life sciences, financial services and energy.
Validation Cloud Secures $5.8 Million in Inaugural Funding to Propel Web3 Infrastructure
ZUG, Switzerland, Feb. 28, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — In a significant stride towards revolutionizing Web3 infrastructure, Validation Cloud has proudly announced the successful closure of its first external investment round, amassing $5.8 million. Spearheaded by San Francisco-based Cadenza Ventures, this funding round exceeded expectations with contributions from an impressive roster of international investors, including Blockchain Founders Fund, Bloccelerate, Blockwall, Side Door Ventures, Metamatic, GS Futures, and AP Capital.
Alex Nwaka, Co-Founder of Validation Cloud, expressed enthusiasm about the funding, “This investment marks a pivotal moment for Validation Cloud as we aim to address the urgent demand for scalable and compliant Web3 infrastructure. We’re honored to collaborate with our investors who are instrumental in propelling the global adoption of our platform among cutting-edge networks, developers, and asset managers.”
Validation Cloud is at the forefront of Web3 technology, having developed an innovative system architecture that paves the way for significant advancements in the sector. Known as the “Cloudflare of Web3,” the company offers a robust, scalable, and intelligent platform providing Staking, Node API, and Data services, drawing inspiration from Cloudflare’s transformative impact on Web2 infrastructure.
Founded by veterans in the Proof-of-Stake domain, Validation Cloud boasts a team of highly experienced professionals from renowned organizations such as Uber, Workday, Deloitte, Citadel, Morgan Stanley, Binance, Crypto.com, Figure, R3, and more, emphasizing a talent-first approach with a worldwide workforce.
Kumar Dandapani, Managing Partner at Cadenza Ventures, highlighted the strategic vision behind their investment, “At Cadenza, we do not invest in just any company; we invest in the future of transformative technologies. Validation Cloud’s pioneering role in Proof-of-Stake and their relentless pursuit of next-generation Web3 infrastructure have set them apart as leaders in the Web3 space.”
Aly Madhavji, Managing Partner at Blockchain Founders Fund, shared his thoughts on the investment, “We believe in the transformative power of Web3 and its ability to redefine how businesses operate. Investing in Validation Cloud aligns perfectly with our vision of supporting innovative platforms that are ready to lead the next wave of digital transformation.”
Validation Cloud has earned a reputation for its close partnerships with networks from their nascent stages, supporting a wide array of ecosystems from established ones like Chainlink, Hedera, and Stellar to emerging networks such as Aptos, Eigenlayer, and Berachain. Their platform lays the groundwork for the enterprise adoption of networks, positioning Validation Cloud as a key player in the Web3 infrastructure landscape.
For further details on Validation Cloud and its offerings, please visit www.validationcloud.io.
Please contact: Kelly Clark, Director of Communications | [email protected]
Klarna says its AI assistant does the work of 700 people after it laid off 700 people
The Swedish fintech, which was criticized for its handling of a dramatic staff reduction in 2022, is touting new efficiencies powered by OpenAI.
Klarna is bullish on bots.
One month after taking its OpenAI-powered virtual assistant global, the Swedish buy-now, pay-later company has released new data touting its ability to handle customer communications, make shoppers happier, and even drive better financial results.
The app-based AI chatbot already handles two-thirds of all customer service chats, the company said Tuesday—some 2.3 million conversations so far—with the virtual assistant earning customer satisfaction ratings at the same level as human agents. Klarna, which is expected to go public this year and will need all the hype it can get at a time when investors have been generally frosty toward IPOs, estimates that the chatbot could help improve its profits by $40 million in 2024.
Announcing a partnership with OpenAI early last year, Klarna said it was one of the first companies to integrate the firm’s groundbreaking ChatGPT technology into a plug-in for shopping. The natural-language interface initially helped customers choose items and make other shopping-related decisions based on personalized queries, a feature Klarna described as “smooth shopping.”
The company has continued to build out its AI offerings since then. Its app-based assistants are now available to customers worldwide and handle a variety of tasks including refunds, cancellations, and even disputes.
Klarna boasted in its announcement on Tuesday that the AI assistant “is doing the equivalent work of 700 full-time agents.”
That statement may raise eyebrows for anyone who remembers the middle of 2022, when the company laid off roughly the same number of employees, then about 10% of its staff. At the time, CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski cited economic uncertainty, inflation, and the likelihood of a recession as reasons for the cuts. He was criticized for his handling of the staff reduction after he shared a public spreadsheet on LinkedIn that contained the names of many of the laid-off workers.
Fast Company asked Klarna how the company arrived at its calculation for its AI assistant’s human-equivalent productivity. The company said the number of equivalent jobs the AI could perform wasn’t related to the layoffs. In a statement, a spokesperson said the company’s customer service is supported by four to five large third-parties that collectively have over 650,000 employees, and that it offers customers the option to speak with human agents if that’s what they prefer.
“This is in no way connected to the workforce reductions in May 2022, and making that conclusion would be incorrect,” the statement read. “We chose to share the figure of 700 to indicate the more long-term consequences of AI technology, where we believe it is important to be transparent in order to create an understanding in society. We think [it’s] important to proactively address these issues and encourage a thoughtful discussion around how society can meet and navigate this transformation.”
Companies have used chatbots for years to handle low-level customer queries and other interactions, although these tools are expected to become more versatile in the wake of advancements in artificial intellegence.
Source: Fast Company
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KAPSARC Launches Saudi Arabia’s First School of Public Policy
- Inspired by His Royal Highness, the Minister of Energy, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman Al Saud’s passion for education, human capital development and innovation, the KAPSARC School of Public Policy (KSPP) was founded as the first institution in Saudi Arabia dedicated to graduate studies and executive education in public policy.
- Through its academic offerings, KSPP empowers individuals to tackle pressing public policy challenges and embrace the promising opportunities shaping the future.
- KSPP’s facilities will run on 100% renewable energy, setting a precedent as one of the first net-zero facilities in the Saudi educational sector.
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, Feb. 28, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — The King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (KAPSARC) has been granted an establishment license for its School of Public Policy (KSPP) after the recent approval by the Council of Ministers, and which was announced during the Human Capability Initiative (HCI) on February 28, 2024, conducted under the patronage of Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince, Prime Minister, and the Chairman of the Human Capability Development Program Committee, one of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 Realization Programs.
Aiming to set new standards in policy studies, the school offers a two-year master’s degree and executive education programs designed to enable and empower future policy leaders and professionals within Saudi Arabia and globally to address the most pressing domestic and international public policy challenges in the public, non-profit and private sectors.
This significant achievement was announced by His Royal Highness, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman Al Saud, the Minister of Energy, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of KAPSARC: “The vision for KAPSARC School of Public Policy is to develop the knowledge and skills that the new generation needs to shape public policy both locally and globally. Our mission is to empower and equip future policy leaders and professionals within Saudi Arabia and internationally to make informed socio-economic decisions.”
In a statement on the sidelines of the school’s launch, Fahad Alajlan, President of KAPSARC, stressed the Center’s mission to impact public policy on national, regional, and global levels. “Our new School of Public Policy will equip future leaders with the right skills to create data-driven and evidence-based public policy in line with Vision 2030 goals.”
Dr. Ghadah Alarifi, Founding Dean of KSPP, stated that, “Public policy serves as the foundation of societal progress. At KSPP, we aim to be a catalyst for collaboration, building a robust ecosystem that bridges academia, industry, and government in the public policy arena.”
By leveraging KAPSARC’s network, KSPP provides a platform for global engagement and career growth opportunities, offering practical application and flexible courses tailored to empower policymakers in different tracks including energy policy.
The school is committed to achieving high sustainability standards in the Saudi educational sector, including the goal of running on 100% renewable energy. This dedication ensures that KSPP meets its annual energy needs through on-site renewable resources, eliminating the use of fossil fuels.
For more information about KSPP, visit https://www.kapsarc.org/about-the-school/.
Follow KSPP on social media:
- X: @KAPSARC_SPP
- LinkedIn: @ KAPSARC School of Public Policy
KAPSARC is a leading think tank dedicated to advancing knowledge on energy, environment, and regional economic issues. Accredited observer of UNFCCC, KAPSARC actively contributes to global climate action. The mission of KAPSARC is to advance Saudi Arabia’s energy sector and inform global policies through evidence-based advice and applied research. For more information about the center please visit: https://www.kapsarc.org/
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