Tahinis, a small family-based restaurant chain in Canada, has been investing all of its cash reserves into the flagship cryptocurrency bitcoin as part of a strategy meant to hedge against inflation. Its return on investment has been around 460%.
According to a report by Business Insider, the restaurant chain was founded by brother Aly and Omar Hamam, which claim bitcoin exposure has been crucial for the chain’s expansion in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic and soaring inflation.
The company first started investing in bitcoin in August 2020, when the price of the flagship cryptocurrency was around $12,000. At press time, CryptoCompare data shows BTC is trading at $57,133 after falling from an all-time high of over $69,000.
Aly, Tahinis chief marketing officer, was quoted saying:
We’re up, to date, 460% on our initial investment and we didn’t stop there. We will continue sweeping excess profit into bitcoins.
Aly added that the chain did buy bitcoin in the April 2021 top and held onto the cryptocurrency when its price plunged months later. Per his words, they kept “buying month after month after month,” in a strategy that “has worked like a charm for us.”
Tahinis has been following a bitcoin-standard strategy, in which it invests all of its profit into bitcoin. The strategy is similar to the one used by Nasdaq-listed business intelligence firm MicroStrategy, which has over 114,00 BTC on its balance sheet, worth over $6.5 billion. Tahinis, Aly said, keeps working capital in cash for a few months to then move it into BTC.
Aly did not disclose how much BTC the company has in its treasury, but did note sales at its restaurants exceeded $8 million over the past year. The company, he said, will expand to nine locations from eight this year, and is on track to have 29 restaurants in 2022. It has worked with “dozens” of small businesses throughout the world to onboard them to a bitcoin-standard strategy.
Aly defended its bitcoin strategy by pointing out that “dollars are devaluing,” noting central banks “say inflation is only 5%” but that the figure depends on what is being bought. Aly added:
[Since March 2020] poultry is up 45%, beef is up 25%, imported goods and spices are up 65%, oils are up 110%. So it made sense to put our money into [bitcoin] and that will outstrip any inflation rates we see for the coming decade.
The restaurant chain has even installed bitcoin machines in every location to encourage employees and customers to buy crypto. It does not, however, accept BTC payments because it wants to encourage people to hold.
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