The Innosilicon A1 Booster / Bitmine Coincraft A1 ASIC is claimed to have been initially designed by Bitmine and contracted out on a 1-year exclusive availability to Innosilicon, LTD. Co. In its public declaration regarding its bankruptcy, Bitmine AG singled out Innosilicon as one of the major reasons for its bankruptcy, stating:
We engaged this company with a regular contract and entitled them to develop our 28nm ASIC based on our know-how and instructions, along with the full turnkey process of creating the mask, wafers and IC packaging. We had signed a contract that was expecting to guarantee us a one year exclusivity on the chip, however at a later stage we received proof that Innosilicon was plainly violating the contract from day zero and selling our own A1 chips to whoever inquired them directly
It is also worth mentioning that while we were struggling with thousands of junk chips, the A-grade ones could at all time be purchased in Hong Kong directly from their Chinese resellers, at some point even at lower prices than what we ourselves paid for.