A Bitcoin margin call. If the world’s leading cryptocurrency drops below $21,000, Michael Saylor’s MicroStrategy will be forced to pay up

Michael Saylor is perhaps 1 of the most fervent supporters of Bitcoin on the planet—and which is expressing a little something, provided the virtually cultlike group guiding the world’s foremost cryptocurrency.

Saylor, an MIT graduate and the cofounder and CEO of the small business intelligence agency MicroStrategy, has turn into a hero to the Bitcoin trustworthy at any time due to the fact his company commenced stockpiling the cryptocurrency in August 2020.

The CEO has absent so considerably as to connect with Bitcoin “freedom,” and “the most universally fascinating home in house and time.” And at Bitcoin 2022 Miami—the greatest Bitcoin occasion worldwide—Saylor was met by countless numbers of cheering lovers as he instructed the group to hardly ever offer their crypto.

Saylor’s Bitcoin appetite has grown so much that the CEO is now borrowing tens of millions from banking institutions to insert far more of the cryptocurrency to MicroStrategy’s balance sheet. The collateral? That’s proper, a lot more Bitcoin.

MicroStrategy additional one more $215 million well worth of Bitcoin at an average invest in selling price of $44,645 for each coin in the to start with quarter, SEC filings show, bringing its overall holdings to 129,218 Bitcoins acquired for $3.97 billion, or $30,700 for every coin.

At Bitcoin’s $39,800 price tag as of 4 p.m. ET on Wednesday, the company’s holdings were well worth in excess of $5.1 billion. The company’s industry cap, on the other hand, is roughly $4 billion.

MicroStrategy has mentioned it has no options to promote its Bitcoin, and thus far, its get-and-hold technique has been profitable. But with Bitcoin’s cost down approximately 35% in the previous 6 months, that may perhaps be shifting.

As a outcome of its standing as a quasi-Bitcoin ETF, and a pile of over $2.3 billion in long-term financial debt, MicroStrategy’s stock is down over 20% in the earlier month and almost 65% from its February 2021 all-time high of over $1,000 per share.

And if Bitcoin’s value carries on to drop, Saylor and firm could face 1 hell of a margin get in touch with.

The margin connect with from hell

MicroStrategy’s CFO Phong Le stated in the company’s 1st-quarter earnings get in touch with on Tuesday that if Bitcoin’s price tag falls under $21,000, or all around 50% from recent levels, it will be forced to pony up extra cryptocurrency to back its $205 million Bitcoin-collateralized financial loan with Silvergate Bank that was utilised to get Bitcoin in the 1st place.

“We took out the personal loan at a 25% LTV the margin call happens at 50% LTV,” Le mentioned. “So fundamentally, Bitcoin desires to slash in fifty percent, or close to $21,000, in advance of we’d have a margin connect with.”

The CFO pointed out that MicroStrategy nonetheless retains “quite a bit” of uncollateralized Bitcoin that it could use to respond to any possible margin phone, nonetheless.

“As you can see, we mentioned formerly we have pretty a little bit of uncollateralized Bitcoin,” Le explained. “So we have far more that we could add in the scenario that we have a great deal of downward volatility. But again, we’re chatting about $21,000 before we get to a issue wherever there wants to be extra margin or much more collateral contributors. So I assume we are in a pretty at ease put exactly where we are suitable now.”

Nonetheless, having out a loan collateralized by Bitcoin to get extra Bitcoin is a risky game. If the world’s main cryptocurrency falls and a margin call goes by, MicroStrategy would be set in a tricky spot. MicroStrategy did not reply to Fortune’s ask for for remark.

This tale was at first showcased on Fortune.com