KEY POINTS

  • Coinbase said revealing the identity of Satoshi Nakamoto is a risk to its business
  • The price of Bitcoin could tank because  Satoshi owns 1 million Bitcoins
  • Coinbase is planning to go public and get listed on the NASDAQ

Some feel that if Satoshi Nakamoto, the creator of Bitcoin, is unmasked, it could pose a  huge risk to the Bitcoin ecosystem and to companies whose businesses revolve around the dominant cryptocurrency's success. One company that worries about this is Coinbase, which is planning to go public by listing on the NASDAQ.

The digital trading platform's S-1 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which was released Thursday, has listed the scenario as a possible risk to its business.

Just like any company intending to go public, Coinbase mentioned the potential threats to its business in the filing. The possibility of the transfer of Satoshi's Bitcoins is another risk factor, according to the filing.

If Satoshi's identity is revealed, the Bitcoin price could deteriorate, Business Insider said, noting that the SEC filing referenced Satoshi's Bitcoins. The creator is said to own 1 million BTC, mined in the early days of the cryptocurrency. 

The risk is warranted, given that in May last year, the price of Bitcoin was briefly rattled by news of very old Bitcoins – possibly owned by Satoshi – suddenly moving out of decades of dormancy. Business Insider added that if the creator is identified, it would pose a threat to Bitcoin's decentralized nature.

If Satoshi's identity is revealed, which would result in a decline in the price of Bitcoin, Coinbase's business will be affected. The company said it is poised to continue benefiting from the rise of digital currencies just as it did in the previous years.  

Another risk identified by Coinbase was the increasing popularity and adoption of decentralized finance. "We compete against a growing number of decentralized and noncustodial platforms and our business may be adversely affected if we fail to compete effectively against them," it said in the filing. 

Coinbase further said that it expects new products and technologies to continue to emerge that might be superior to its products. "Our success will depend on our ability to develop and incorporate new offerings and adapt to technological changes and evolving industry practices," it concluded.

Coinbase CEO Coinbase plans to list more cryptocurrencies with the announcement of its new policy. Here, Coinbase cofounder and CEO Brian Armstrong (left) and moderator Fitz Tepper speak onstage during Day 3 of TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2018 at Moscone Center in San Francisco, Sept. 7, 2018. Photo: Steve Jennings/Getty Images