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Rumors of a Power Grab in Canaan Intensify as Three Directors Removed From Official Company Registry

Canaan, one of the top three Bitcoin mining hardware manufacturers in China, is going through a rather turbulent period. The company has been shaken to the core by an internal power struggle going on between its founders and directors and the rumors currently surrounding the ongoing event aren’t calming anything down.

According to the latest report from BlockBeats, Zhang Nangeng, the founder of Canaan, also known in China as Jianan Yunzhi, has removed many of Canaan’s higher up executives from their positions. The report states that Zhang and several directors from Canaan’s Beijing office went to Hangzhou in late June to take the official seal and the business license of the company. By obtaining control over the documents, they were able to gain majority control over the company and remove many of the higher-up managers in the Hangzhou office.

The event reportedly escalated and ended up with Canaan’s Hangzhou employees calling the police. No further information about the incident was revealed. 

As of today, Canaan’s official page in the Chinese business registry now lists Zhang as the company’s sole director and legal representative. Zhang, who previously served as the company’s chief executive officer, is now both the executive director and general manager.

Tu Songhua, Li Jiaxuan, Sun Qifeng, and Kong Jianping have all been erased from the company’s registry, while Meng Lu was added as a “supervisor.”

It is still unclear what practical consequences this will have for the company. Kong Jianping, who until yesterday served as the co-chairman of Canaan, said earlier today that he didn’t withdraw from his position at the company.

In a statement to the Daily Economic News, Kong said that he wasn’t familiar with the situation that has been widely reported in local Chinese media.

“I’m not familiar with this,” he said when asked about his removal from the company registry. “I am currently on vacation due to a foot injury. I didn’t withdraw from my management position.”

He further explained that, as to his knowledge, there haven’t been any changes to the company’s leadership in any registry. Canaan is one of a handful of companies in the crypto industry that is listed on the stock market and, as such, has a much more transparent structure.

“The structure of our entire listed company is in Cayman, not China,” he told reporters.

According to him, none of the company’s subsidiaries have been changed, including the officially listed company. He explained that Jianan Technology, the company that operates all of its regional subsidiaries, such as the ones in Hangzhou and Beijing, is registered in the Cayman Islands and hasn’t seen its structure changes. Hangzhou Jianan Yunzhi Information Technology Co., Ltd., the company Zhang reportedly took over by forcefully obtaining its official seal, is also “normal,” Kong told the Daily Economic News. 

However, Kong’s statement doesn’t line up with the factual state of affairs—the official website of Canaan Hangzhou responded to rumors about Zhang’s takeover by stating that all of its production and operational activities are normal. The company also stated that as of its November Nasdaq listing, Zhang owns 15% of the shares and has 72.6% of the voting rights within the company.

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