Bankrupt Exchange FTX Granted Approval to Sell Trust Assets

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Defunct cryptocurrency exchange FTX has received authorization to sell $873 million worth of its trust assets.

According to a Delaware bankruptcy court document, the proceeds from the sales are to be used to repay customers who were affected by the sudden collapse of the Bahamian-headquartered digital asset service provider in 2022.

“The debtors are authorized, but not directed, to execute sales of the trust assets, in their reasonable business judgment, in accordance with the following sale procedures,” the filing outlined.

FTX to Dispose its Grayscale Trust 

The $874 million in assets will be sourced from FTX’s stakes in Grayscale trusts. 

Markedly, FTX’s trust assets comprises shares in several Grayscale funds including Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) as well as a Bitwise crypto index fund, all valued at over $744 million as of October 25, 2023. Noteworthy, the value would have increased reasonably since that time especially as GBTC’s discount to its net asset value has reduced owing to the recent Bitcoin (BTC) price rally. 

Currently, FTX holds over 22 million units of GBTC and 6.3 million shares of ETHE, which is worth approximately $691 million and $106 million respectively. 

Galaxy Oversees Restructuring Plan 

In addition, the court highlighted Galaxy’s mandate to help FTX complete the sales of its trust assets. Recall that Galaxy Digital Capital Management was chosen by FTX earlier this year to oversee the sales and management of its recovered digital asset holdings. 

This latest authorization comes barely four weeks after FTX Debtors filed a motion to U.S. Judge John Dorsey, requesting the sales of Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), Grayscale Ethereum Trust (ETHE), Bitwise 10 Crypto Index Fund and three other cryptocurrency trusts. 

Debtors Explore Multiple Restructuring Proposals

FTX Debtors have been considering multiple proposals as a way forward from the bankruptcy path which started since last year.

An initial “shortfall claim” outlines FTX debtors’ estimate that customers of FTX.com and FTX.US will collectively receive 90% of the available assets for distribution. Disbursement was scheduled for the second quarter of 2024, although it is largely dependent on the bankruptcy court’s approval.

Kevin Cofsky, a partner at investment bank Perella Weinberg Partners, revealed in a recent court hearing that debtors have been “evaluating that process relative to the potential to reorganize the assets on a standalone basis.”

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