Just before 10 days the Norwegian billionaire Øystein Stray Spetalen totally denied Bitcoin as an investment
During a conference for DNB he said that Bitcoin is a “nonsense currency”. But after a week he bought Bitcoin and invested in Norway’s largest Bitcoin exchange MiraiEx.
Here are some quotes said by Spetalen during the interview.”Bitcoin today consumes as much energy as all of Norway. It is extremely environmentally hostile. The authorities and the EU should ban it immediately. Then you’d cut CO2 emissions considerably.” He added: “It’s just nonsense. We’re doing well with the payment systems that are in place today.”
Is the payment system actually is doing well is another question. Just 4% of all payments in Norway are made with fisical money. The country is the most cashless country in the world. Last week the Central bank of Norway said that they are searching for a new type of payment infrastructure that can help with the high volume of the transactions.
Just a few days after the podcast was launched during the interview for Finansavisen Spetalen changed the direction of the wind. “When the facts change, I change. I met the MiraiEx founders Thuc and Øyvind the day after the podcast was recorded, early in March, and I realized that I had been wrong. And when I also read that [industrial magnate and fellow Norwegian billionaire] Kjell Inge Røkke had got into Bitcoin, it was quite obvious. I can’t bear to see that Røkke makes money and not me” Spetalen said.
The billionaire announced that he bought Bitcoin but it is less than the coins owned by his colleague Røkke. Spetalen now joins the board at MiraiEx.