Shares of Block Inc. (SQ -4.16%) were climbing today after Intel announced on Friday that Block will be one of its first customers for a new energy-efficient cryptocurrency mining chip that it's shipping later this year.
The tech stock was up by 5.9% as of 11:42 a.m. ET.
Intel's senior vice president of accelerated computing systems, Raja Koduri, said in a company blog post on Friday that Intel has developed an energy-efficient crypto-mining chip, which it calls an "accelerator," that has "over 1000x better performance per watt" compared to graphics processors.
Koduri said that the blockchain accelerator will ship later this year, that the company is "engaged directly with customers that share our sustainability goals," and, notably, that Block (formerly Square) is among its first customers.
Just last month, Block CEO Jack Dorsey said that his company is building an open-source Bitcoin mining system. Thomas Templeton, who is Block's general manager of hardware, tweeted in January that the goal is "to make mining more distributed and efficient in every way..."
Block could achieve its blockchain and mining ambitions with Intel's new chip, and investors appear to be on board with the idea today.
Square rebranded itself as Block back in December as the company continues to move more into blockchain technology and the crypto market. It's still too early to tell what the long-term payoff from using Intel's new chip for Block's blockchain project will be, but investors should certainly keep a close eye on new developments that stem from this announcement.
With the stock still down more than 49% over the past three months, any positive news showing that Block is focusing on its future is no doubt welcomed by investors.