Fourteen-year-old Ishaan Thakur and his sister, 9-year-old Aanya, have spent the past few months setting up a lucrative mining operation. What started with a single computer in a room desk is now an entire business that has found a home in a rented, air-conditioned data center in downtown Dallas, Texas. Each month, the two siblings earn over $30,000 mining bitcoin and two other cryptocurrencies.
"We started because we wanted to learn something new about technology – and also make some money along the way," Ishaan told CNBC. "We could have spent the entire summer playing video games, but instead we used our spare time to learn about technology."
The two siblings started with curiosity. Ishaan started watching many YouTube videos and scraping the internet for resources on mining and the associated technologies, diving deep into the technicalities necessary for setting up a successive mining business.
But it wasn't until their father, Manish Raj, took out a loan to purchase dedicated equipment that the venture, Flifer Technologies, really took off. The company now has Antminers housed in a rented, air-conditioned data center in Dallas, built specifically for the mining operations. Raj told CNBC they expect to make around $36,000 in September with all the additional equipment that is yet to arrive.
The siblings said they use "100% renewable energy for our mining" because "we want to be environmentally friendly." Their electric bill costs just below $3,000 in total for both their home and data center, Ishaan said.
"We moved from my desk to the garage, since the house was getting too much heat and noise. [We] outgrew the garage, since heat and noise was too much for the garage too," Ishaan told CNBC. "We now use the garage only for building and testing mining rigs. When they are ready, we move them to a professional, air-conditioned data center in downtown Dallas."
Ishaan and Aanya said they plan to reinvest most of the profit back in the company, but they hope that profits from the mining operations will also help pay for their college fees in the future. Both siblings want to go to Medical School; Ishaan hopes to attend the University of Pennsylvania, whereas Aanya wants to attend New York University.