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The sale of FTX’s $500 million stake in artificial intelligence startup Anthropic has reportedly been put on hold, adding a potential delay to the bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange’s efforts to fill the remaining $2 billion hole in its balance sheet.
On June 27, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter, that advisory investment bank FTX Parella Weinberg Partners had suspended the sale of FTX’s stake in Anthropic this month, despite many parties being interested in buying FTX’s stake.
The sale of the stake would be a significant cash recovery for FTX. A June 26 report by FTX’s head of restructuring, John Wray, alleged that $8.7 billion worth of user funds were misappropriated, of which about $7 billion was returned.
FTX pauses Anthropic sale. Wise move.
Selling losers first is crucial.
Anthropic tokenisation might also synergize well with FTX 2.0, as an exclusive listing. pic.twitter.com/WJd900JBYw
— FTX 2.0 Coalition (@AFTXcreditor) June 27, 2023
Prior to the suspension, several buyers were reportedly interested in FTX’s stake in Anthropic. In early June, Semafor reported that FTX was offering potential investors an artificial intelligence firm.
At the time of bankruptcy in November 2022, FTX held $500 million worth of Anthropic stock, which is now expected to be worth much more given the AI boom in full swing.
On May 23, Anthropic reached its reported $4.6 billion valuation and raised $450 million in its latest funding round. Anthropic offers an artificial intelligence chatbot called “Claude” that it claims can be used for a variety of purposes, including sales, customer service, and web browsing.
At the time of the bankruptcy, FTX’s stake in the AI firm was one of its largest holdings, after a reported $1.15 billion investment in cryptocurrency miner Genesis Digital Assets.
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The sale pause report comes just days after Ray’s report on alleged misuse and mixing of FTX customer funds, which claimed FTX had $2 billion left before all assets could potentially be returned.
FTX Debtors released their second investigative report, which details the commingling and misuse of customer deposits at https://t.co/Svd0COiEpS by FTX Group’s previous management team: https://t.co/jtz3vI0jBY
— FTX (@FTX_Official) June 26, 2023
The report includes details of thousands of dollars in “grants” allegedly given to niche projects not related to cryptography.
The report also details alleged investments in venture capital firms, a $243 million portfolio of Bahamian real estate, as well as donations to nonprofits, and a political action committee chaired by Gabe Bankman-Freed, the younger brother of FTX co-founder Sam Bankman. Fried.
Cointelegraph contacted Parella Weinberg Partners and Anthropic for comment but received no immediate response.