Bankman-Fried Considering Acquisition of Celsius
Sam Bankman-Fried, founder and CEO of digital asset exchange FTX, is reportedly considering buying the assets of bankrupt lender Celsius Network.
Sam Bankman-Fried is known for helping struggling crypto companies and recently bought several of them. This week, FTX successfully acquired the assets of bankrupt crypto brokerage Voyager Digital Ltd. after winning an auction with a bid of around $50 million.
In addition to the lending business, Celsius also has bitcoin mining facilities and a cryptocurrency custody business. The company filed for bankruptcy protection in July this year. However, it is still unclear which of Bankman-Fried’s crypto companies — crypto exchange FTX or trading firm Alameda Research — will be involved in the fight for some or all of Celsius’ assets.
Cryptocurrency platform BlockFi was also acquired by FTX earlier this year, along with a potential acquisition of Robinhood Markets Inc., in which Bankman-Fried holds a stake.
According to sources, FTX is raising $1 billion in funding. Sources familiar with the deal added that the deal has yet to be finalized or made public. Negotiations are reportedly ongoing and confidential, and the company will raise up to $1 billion to maintain its previous $32 billion valuation. However, according to sources, this could change.
Meanwhile, Celsius CEO Alex Mashinsky stepped down on Tuesday. Mashinsky co-founded Celsius Network with Daniel Leon back in 2017 and the company has grown into one of the most well-known cryptocurrency lending platforms in the crypto world. However, in June of this year, the company stopped withdrawing funds and eventually filed for bankruptcy after realizing that internal restructuring and layoffs were not enough to solve liquidity problems.
Mashinsky’s resignation comes as the company is mired in bankruptcy proceedings, and the former CEO said his departure would elevate his position to help all stakeholders ultimately get the most out of the company. Following his resignation, the cryptocurrency company and its creditors are considering a range of alternatives, from restructuring to liquidation.
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