It was during their summer vacation that Ishaan Thakur, 14, and his sister Aanya, 9, spent their time constructing a profitable cryptocurrency mining business.
“We started because we wanted to learn something new about technology – and also make some money along the way,” Ishaan tells CNBC Make It.
And indeed, they have.
Each month, the siblings earn more than $30,000 mining three digital currencies: bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization; ether, the second-largest; and ravencoin, a top-100 altcoin, according to Ishaan.
“Crypto mining is just like mining for gold or diamonds,” Ishaan says. “Instead of using shovels, you mine with computers. Instead of finding a piece of gold or a diamond in the mine, you find a cryptocurrency.”
Ishaan and Aanya, who are based in Frisco, Texas, had to learn how to mine in order to accomplish this, which is no easy task. When complicated computers are trained to compete to solve tough riddles in order to validate transactions, they are used to mine cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ether.
His parents were supportive: “We could have spent the entire summer playing video games, but instead we used our spare time to learn about technology,” Ishaan says.
Ishaan transformed his Alienware, a popular type of gaming computer, into an ether mining set up in April after watching YouTube videos and conducting research online. (He accomplished this by utilizing the graphics card, which is capable of performing a large number of calculations required for mining.)
The siblings began with ether due to the difficulty of mining bitcoin. Due to bitcoin’s limited supply and rising demand, competition for mining bitcoin can be fierce.
Ishaan says he earned $3 on their first day.
Ishaan and Aanya formed their own mining company, Flifer Technologies, on April 30 with the assistance of their father, Manish Raj.
“We were so pleased with it that we began adding additional processors [or chips] and earned $1,000 in our first month,” Ishaan explains.
The siblings’ income continued to grow, and by late July, they were able to purchase mining equipment such as Antminers and Nvidia RTX 3080-Ti graphics cards in order to begin mining bitcoin and ravencoin as well. They selected ravencoin to mine since the equipment they had was “optimal” for it, Raj explains.
They anticipate earning approximately $36,000 in September, Raj says, depending on the equipment already on order.