On February 26, Substratum moved another 1,200 ETH to Kraken – most likely to liquidate into USD to cover operating expenses. ETH was worth ~$133 on the day of the transfer, which means Substratum’s 1,200 ETH liquidation was worth ~$159,600. Substratum made a similar transfer of 2,500 ETH (~287,000) earlier this year on January 25, 2019. My guess is Substratum liquidated 2,500 ETH in January in order to cover operating expenses for January and February, while the most recent 1,200 ETH liquidation will be used for expenses in March. These recent liquidations support the hypothesis that Substratum’s burn rate is ~$150,000, a figure which I first wrote about in August of last year after observing liquidation patterns in April and May.

So, what is that $150,000 being spent on? There’s no need to think too much about this question. Substratum claims to have 27 team members – $150,000/27 results in ~$5555.55 for each member of the team per month. This number does not take other operating expenses into account.

At the moment, Substratum has 5,150.991684 ETH left in its treasury with no sign of a feasible revenue stream in sight. With a monthly burn rate of $150,000 and ETH’s current price, Substratum has approximately four months of runway left before it runs out of money. Justin Tabb’s latest projection for SubstratumNode V1’s release date was “6-21” weeks. Six weeks is a month and a half, and 21 weeks is over five months. Considering SubstratumNode has a near-zero chance of generating $150,000/month in revenue for Substratum, it makes you wonder where Justin Tabb is going to be able to find the money to keep his ship afloat.

It’s possible that the Substratum still has BTC, USDT, and USD in its treasury, but I highly doubt it for two reasons.

  • The $150,000/month figure makes sense for a company with 27 employees, and Substratum’s ETH liquidations have supported this burn rate figure for the past year.
  • Justin Tabb constantly preaches about “transparency,” and has been very open with sharing this ETH wallet address. If the company does hold BTC and USDT, why not be transparent with those wallet addresses as well?

If you’re still invested in SUB (I don’t know why you would be at this point), do yourself a favor and keep an eye on Substratum’s ETH wallet address over the next 4-5 months.