In March 2018, the famous Italian TV programme, Le Iene, broadcast a report entitled “Inside the Bitcoin mines“.
In the service, which lasted about 13 minutes, Matteo Viviani showed a bitcoin mining farm in Bulgaria run by an Italian guy.
The electricity in Bulgaria is cheaper than in Italy, so moving to that country to open a mining farm is an absolutely logical idea.
Moreover, at the time the overall hashrate of the Bitcoin network was seven times lower than it is today, so there was much less competition than now.
However, it is also true that the value of 1 BTC was around $9,000, or one-fifth of what it is now, which means that the hashrate was proportionally much lower.
It is enough to consider that compared to the current profitability of bitcoin mining of around $0.36 per THash/s per day, at the time the profitability was more than double, at around $0.8.
In addition, the plant shown by Le Iene was a professional plant, with about 500 machines, therefore with the potential to be very profitable, at least in theory.
The owner of the farm, Gianluca Mazza, told Matteo Viviani that he spent about seven thousand euros a month on electricity, whereas in Italy he would have spent three times that amount.
Since then, however, many things have changed.
“Inside the Bitcoin mines”, how has mining changed
In fact, the price of bitcoin over the course of 2018 fell, to near $3,000 in December. This literally caused the profitability of bitcoin mining to plummet, plummeting to around $0.15 per day per THash/s just in December. In other words, over the course of the year it fell by a factor of 5.
However, the growth of the hashrate also declined, and so by mid-2019, when the price of bitcoin returned above $10,000, the profitability was back above $0.30.
It then fell again, to a low peak of around $0.06 in the second half of 2020, mainly due to a significant increase in hashrate, but thanks to the price bull run of recent months it is back around $0.30.
It is not known what happened to Mazza’s plant, although in June of that year he told Cryptonomist that he was working on a second farm.
The Twitter profile of his 0301 Mining Farm has been down since mid-2019 and the website is not active.