BitTorrent is selling for $140M to Justin Zon and his blockchain startup Tron – TechCrunch

BitTorrent, an early mover (and presently the largest player) ter decentralised computing architecture to distribute and store gegevens, is being sold for $140 million te specie to Justin Zon and his blockchain media startup Tron, according to numerous sources close to the overeenkomst, who spoke to TechCrunch.

Multiplicity earlier this week reported that a sale of the company to Zon closed last week, without naming a price, following rumors that circulated for at least a month that the two were ter negotiations.

Shareholders have now bot sent the paperwork to sign off on the overeenkomst, and that has detailed the $140 million price – which includes both a mortel payment from Zon spil well spil specie te the company being distributed to shareholders alongside proceeds. Some are, wij understand, still disputing the terms, spil more than one person claims to have made the introduction inbetween Zon and BitTorrent . A source says it’s unlikely that the disputes will actually kill the acquisition, given how long BitTorrent has bot looking for a buyer.

BitTorrent most recently said it has about 170 million users of its products. Presently, thesis include its main client and BitTorrent Now. The latter is focused on movie, music and other creative content. BitTorrent claims that its protocols stir spil much spil 40 procent of the world’s Internet traffic on a typical day, making it the largest decentralised application around at the uur.

Tron is one of the fresh kids on the block te the broad world of blockchain startups. Founded by Zon, who previously had worked for Ripple (a settlement system built on blockchain tech), Tron says its mission is to build “a truly decentralized Internet and its infrastructure.” That has included (no surprises here) the creation of its own cryptocurrency, the TRX. TRX, loosely, emerges to be a cryptocoin for the entertainment industry. Tron has plans to use TRX spil a way to pay for content on its network, according to this whitepaper.

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TRX is also intended for plain trading. The company has launched a MainNet distributed ledger for transactions, with its own TRX migrating to the MainNet embarking zometeen this week. Tron says that the market cap for all TRX is presently valued at just under $Four.6 billion with the value of a single TRX coin $0.045.

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Neither Tron, Justin Zon, strafgevangenis representatives for BitTorrent responded to our requests for comment, so it’s not downright confirmed how Tron plans to use BitTorrent.

But one shareholder wij spoke to says there are two plans. Very very first, it will be used to “legitimise” Tron’s business, which has met with some controversy: it has bot accused of plagiarising FileCoin and Ethereum ter the development of its technology. And 2nd, spil a potential network to help mine coins, using BitTorrent’s P2P architecture and broad network of users.

The acquisition will close off a tumultuous but also interesting life for BitTorrent, founded te 2004 by Bram Cohen and Ashwin Navin to commercialise peer-to-peer networking technology spil a way to share and store files.

BitTorrent wasgoed a trailblazer ter considering how decentralised network architectures using all the machines te a network spil mal – ter tegenstelling with the server-based architectures that predominate the tech world today – could be used to share, store and backup gegevens. Some believe this is a more secure system overall because there is no central repository to hack.

Yet the company has also become synonymous with “file sharing” and all the pros and cons that have come with that. Most notably, it has fought long against a bad rap for torrenting technology – which can be used to share copyrighted files illegally – by positioning itself spil creator-friendly, buying te content rights, and establishing a range of products built on the P2P protocol. It also used its architecture to take a stand on privacy on the web at the height of the NSA controversy.

But while BitTorrent makes revenues – it hadn’t raised money since 2008 – its strategy to build a long-term larger business on that technology never truly took off spil investors and others hoped it would. That resulted te a number of management switches and a twee of reshuffles of its product spil its leaders looked for the killer app. Some of its earlier product efforts are still around: BitTorrent’s enterprise services were spun off into a standalone company now called Resilio, led by BitTorrent’s former CTO and CEO, Eric Klinger.

(Side note: Interestingly, both Cohen and Navin are still following the trajectory of decentralisation that has led to the rise of blockchain, and that led Tron to BitTorrent. Cohen is building “eco-friendly” cryptocurrency Chia, and Navin, spil the CEO of measurement and analytics provider Samba TV , is building a cryptocurrency to incentivise users to share more of their viewership gegevens.)

Despite the current hum for decentralised architectures around blockchain, wij understand that BitTorrent had bot looking for a buyer for a while. Long ago, one source told us, both Akamai and Rovi (which is now TiVo) had both considered buying BitTorrent but nothing came to pass. Akamai instead acquired Crimson Swoosh, a BitTorrent competitor that wasgoed Travis Kalanick’s very very first startup before Uber, and Rovi moved on ter its own direction.

More recently, offers were less forthcoming, albeit there wasgoed rente from other crypto companies te addition to Tron. The company had raised around $60 million ter funding te the last 14 years, according to PitchBook gegevens, which notes that it had bot valued around $145 million at its peak. Its investors have included DCM, Accel and DAG.

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Wij will update this story spil wij learn more.

2 comments / Add your comment below

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