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Nexon Joins Tesla in Bitcoin Bet With $100 Million Purchase

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(Bloomberg) -- Nexon Co. said it bought $100 million worth of Bitcoin, joining a list of tech companies embracing the digital currency.

The online game provider acquired 1,717 Bitcoins at an average price of about $58,226 each, including fees and expenses. The purchase represents less than 2% of Nexon’s total cash and cash equivalents on hand, and is the largest-ever purchase of digital currency made by a company traded in Tokyo, Nexon said.

“Our purchase of bitcoin reflects a disciplined strategy for protecting shareholder value and for maintaining the purchasing power of our cash assets,” Owen Mahoney, Nexon’s chief executive officer, said in a statement. “In the current economic environment, we believe Bitcoin offers long-term stability and liquidity while maintaining the value of our cash for future investments.”

A growing number of global firms including Tesla Inc. and Square Inc. have moved to purchase Bitcoin in recent months, with more starting to accept the cryptocurrency as a form of payment. Firms in Japan, which was an early leader in Bitcoin acceptance, have been slow to join this trend.

Nexon said it intended to guard itself against a potential drop in the value of non-digital currencies in case of inflation, with Mahoney seeing Bitcoin as a “form of cash likely to retain its value, even if it is not yet widely-recognized as such.”

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