The Student News Site of Menlo School

The Coat of Arms

The Student News Site of Menlo School

The Coat of Arms

The Student News Site of Menlo School

The Coat of Arms

Acacia Trading: Bitcoin Bots that Make Money for You


 Menlo seniors created a company to simplify the Bitcoin trading process. Photo courtesy of John Reinstra. 

By Lauren Yang 

An idea that stemmed from playing with Bitcoins soon blossomed into a company that hopes to streamline the Bitcoin trading process. Last year, Menlo seniors John Reinstra, Julian Christensen, and Ian Loftis established a company that hopes to accomplish this, called Acadia Trading.

To streamline the Bitcoin trading process, the team aims to create a service that is still powerful even though it does not require coding experience and is inexpensive. “The goal is to provide a more complex strategy building than the services that have the same kind of simple strategy building, but also have it be simple enough for a person to use,” Loftis said.

Essentially, a Bitcoin is a digital form of currency. “It has no central body so it’s distributed only through sort of a network so there’s no actual person or entity passing out Bitcoins, it’s completely decentralized,” Reinstra said. A maximum of 1.2 million people own Bitcoin, and users typically consist of Bitcoin enthusiasts. Currently, one Bitcoin is roughly equivalent to 394 USD. Many companies, like, already accept Bitcoin as payment, and others, like PayPal are considering accepting it.

Acadia Trading provides an inexpensive, easy-to-use service for automatically trading Bitcoins. “Acadia Trading […] lets people who don’t know how to program or code set up their own […] trading bots which will trade the coins, [meaning they will…] buy low and sell high,” Reinstra said.

Currently, the company has a mobile app that allows the user to manipulate and control the bot. “[Acadia Trading also includes a feature that enables users to] test their strategy with historical data, which will tell [the user] how [the strategy has] done in the last 30 days, or 60 days,” Reinstra added.

Loftis purchased his first Bitcoin when he was in 8th grade. However, he did not start trading Bitcoins until 9th or 10th grade. During the spring of sophomore year, Reinstra and Loftis approached Christensen to ask if he would be willing to join their company.


Photo courtesy of John Reinstra.

After having a frustrating experience manually trading Bitcoins, the founders were inspired to create an inexpensive, easy to use Bitcoin trading service. “A few months before we thought of the idea of making a company, we were experimenting with trading [Bitcoins] and we realized how annoying it was to try to stay up and time everything [correctly,]” Reinstra said.

Current Bitcoin trading services, like Haasbot and Tradewave, were either too hard to use or too expensive. “The [services] that were easy to use didn’t really do much so we wanted to create a solution that was flexible and could give you a lot of options with your trading bot but still be pretty inexpensive and easy to use. We decided to just make a company out of it,” Reinstra said.

Loftis, Reinstra, and Christensen coded their company entirely by themselves. “John handled the back end[, or] the majority of the trading and the calculations […] and Julian and I worked on the mobile apps. I built the iPhone app and Julian built the Android app,” Loftis said.

The company is now focusing on developing a website so users can trade from their computers. “[We’re working on a website] because we realized that at least in the Bitcoin world, most people are using these websites on desktop computers or laptops or what have you,” Reinstra said. Now that they are second-semester seniors and have more free time, the co-founders hope to put more hours into their company and to release their website near the end of January.

Currently, Acacia Trading has 600 to 800 registered users and around ten paying customers. “[With the paying customers,]we’re finally starting to break even on our server costs which is pretty nice because that’s not happened yet in the last year and a half since we started the company,” Reinstra said.

Reinstra, Loftis, and Christensen are not sure whether they are going to continue Acacia Trading when they go to college. “If there’s ridiculous amounts of success, like we have a 1,000 paying users or 10,000 paying users, then we might consider pursuing it, but right now I think we’re probably going to do the best we can on it and either sell it or just discontinue it in the summer because we’re all probably going to go to different colleges and so it will be pretty hard to collaborate,” Reinstra said.
As their launch date approaches, the three seniors are hard at work implementing the finishing touches. Acacia Trading’s website can be found here

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

The Coat of Arms encourages dialogue with our audience. We welcome constructive comments that avoid slander, hate, profanity and misinformation. In an effort to give voice to a variety of perspectives, anonymous comments will be considered, but signed comments are preferred. If you would like to submit an anonymous comment, please write "Anonymous" in the "Name" field below. While a valid email address is required, The Coat of Arms will not publish your email address. The Editorial Board will review comments and decide whether they will be put online; the editors reserve the right to edit for concision.
All The Coat of Arms Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *