A businessman from South Africa is about to sell the gold casts of Nelson Madela’s hands for 10 million dollars in bitcoins, after ten years of looking for the buyer.
Malcolm Duncan is a South African businessman who tried to sell the gold casts in 2007 and he was criticized for not planning to donate the money to charity.
According to an official announcement, Arbitrade, a company from Ontario, Canada, specialized in cryptocurrencies is about to launch its initial coin offering (ICO) campaign and is planning to start mining and trading cryptocurrencies. According to Len Schutzman, the CEO of Arbitrade, a parte of the funds in cryptocurrencies will be backed up by precious metals such as gold.
Arbitrade announced the purchase of five gold cast of the hands of Nelson Mandela created in 2002 by the South African mining company called Harmony Gold, one of the largest gold producers in the world.
The agreement was signed by Malcolm Duncan and Arbitrade during the PDAC (Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada) conference in Toronto at the beginning of this month. The CEO of Arbitrade, Leo Schutzman said: “It was the first time the collection had been on display to the general public anywhere in the world since the Letter of Authenticity had been received from Harmony Gold and we felt it was singularly appropriate that we should have met to purchase the collection at the famed PDAC Conference, one of the largest gold and metals events in the world.”
Schutzman also said he preferred to acquire ingots rather than art, but the gold casts of Nelson Mandela’s hands seem to be an exception.
The gold casts weigh around 9 kilograms (20 pounds) and their value does not derive from the fact they are made from gold, but from the fact they could be used to educate the new generations and spread the knowledge about Mandela’s life and his fight for the human rights, says Schutzman. This is why the gold casts will go on a tour around the world organized by Arbitrade.
It is worth mentioning that the artistic market related to Nelson Mandela was quite active after he was released from prison. Mandela himself ordered that some of the artistic pieces made in his name are destroyed, which caused legal problems and discussions between the owners of these pieces, Mandela’s family and the public opinion. This way, the gold casts of Mandela’s hands are some of the few remaining artistic pieces related to Nelson Mandela.
Nyameko Goso, the General Consul of South Africa in Toronto said: “We thank Arbitrade for helping us celebrate Nelson Mandela’s 100th Anniversary in this very special way and keeping alive his great legacy. At the same time, the purchase of this remarkable collection made of South African gold, is also a tribute to South Africa’s gold mining industry who have contributed so much to the gold market and mining over the many years.”
On the other hand, Malcolm Duncan assured he paid double for the gold casts because Harmony Gold was suppose to give half of the money to Mandela’s charities. It is not clear if this actually happened.
Arbitrade paid a deposit in bitcoins worth 50,000 US dollars to Duncan and the rest of the money should be paid to the South African businessman in quarterly installments of at least two million dollars per installment.