Software company BitTorrent Inc., which develops and maintains a peer-to-peer file transfer application BitTorrent, was reportedly purchased by Justin Sun – founder of TRON blockchain platform. Rumours of potential acquisition have surfaced back in May and they have now been confirmed, as the staff of BitTorrent have received official notifications of the imminent takeover, according to the report by Variety.
The official negotiations have started way back in September 2017, with the acquisition originally scheduled for January. The talks stalled for a while, as BitTorrent started talks with other prospective buyers, which even resulted in Mr. Sun filing a lawsuit against his targeted company. Nonetheless, Sun has eventually won the race.
Another hint that the deal was imminent is that Mr. Sun has registered a legal entity named ‘Rainberry Acquisition LLC’. Why was this significant? BitTorrent had already changed their operating legal entity name to ‘Rainberry Inc.’ back in early 2017. This week both companies have filed merger documents with the California Secretary of State.
The deal is shrouded by secrecy as the financial details of it are yet to be publicized. The staff at BitTorrent have been informed about the deal last week but the management advised them not to talk to the press about it.
BitTorrent has been troubled in recent years with numerous obstacles hindering the development of the company that could boast 150 million active monthly users at one point. A decade ago, the company raised millions to expand into entertainment sphere on top of its file-sharing business but unfortunately, those plans proved to be too ambitious and the company was forced to significantly reduce its staff and recapitalize.
The company quickly rebounded after that and looked set to become the next tech giant but once again was dragged down significantly by two investors who have acquired one of the original investor’s stake in BitTorrent. The said investors subsequently got on the company’s board and even became co-CEOs before launching a costly expansion into the media space, which has failed spectacularly, resulting in both of them getting fired and the company shutting down its Los Angeles production facility.
Founder and CEO Bram Cohen departed from the company last year and is now in charge of his own cryptocurrency project Chia, focused on improving the crypto infrastructure.
TRON price did not react to the announcement, as it has climbed less than 1 percent since the announcement to trade at around $0.04 at press time.
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