FTX Sells $1.9 Billion of Solana, CEO charges $363K in March

The FTX estate has sold $1.9 billion worth of Solana (SOL) tokens to reduce the debt of the now-defunct cryptocurrency exchange.

According to Bloomberg, the sale equals about two-thirds of a SOL lot valued at $2.6 billion, which included up to 30 million SOL tokens priced at $64 each. The discount on these tokens was attributed to their locked status, which delays their availability for sale.

The transaction was postponed due to heightened buyer interest, with Galaxy Trading—a subsidiary of Galaxy Digital—disclosed its desire to acquire FTX’s SOL holdings. Galaxy Trading established a $620 million fund specifically for purchasing FTX’s SOL, charging a management fee of 1%.

Currently, the FTX estate still owns 41 million SOL tokens, locked and valued at an estimated $7.5 billion. The Solana token itself has seen fluctuations in its trading price, recorded at $174.2 at 1 p.m. ET today, following a nearly 7% decrease over the past 24 hours.

Since FTX’s collapse in November 2022, there has been interest from investors in acquiring a share of the firm’s Solana holdings, which constituted the largest portion of FTX’s digital asset portfolio. Other major assets included bitcoin, ether, and the Aptos blockchain’s native token, APT.

Investment firms such as Neptune Digital and Pantera have also engaged in purchasing discounted Solana tokens from FTX’s estate, with Neptune Digital acquiring 26,964 SOL at $64 each and Pantera setting up a $250 million fund in March for this purpose.

Solana’s value notably dipped to around $10 after FTX’s downfall but rebounded in early 2024, even reaching an all-time high market capitalization of $81 billion in mid-March, propelled by the popularity of memecoins.

FTX CEO John J. Ray III earns $1,575 an hour

John J. Ray III, the CEO tasked with overseeing the bankruptcy proceedings of FTX, was compensated at a rate of $1,575 per hour last month, a court document revealed on Thursday. During March, Ray dedicated 231 hours to his duties, amounting to a total payment of $363,825. His responsibilities included conducting weekly phone calls, attending in-person board meetings for bankruptcy restructuring, and overseeing various operational aspects, including internal controls, employee management, and global interactions with teams in Japan and Europe.

The court filing detailed Ray’s extensive involvement in managing the exchange’s assets, investments, data, systems, and public relations strategies amidst the bankruptcy process. FTX reportedly owes its customers over $8 billion.

Ray previously described the FTX situation as more dire than Enron’s, highlighting the unprecedented level of corporate mismanagement and lack of reliable financial data he found.

Interestingly, Ray is the sole representative from Owl Hill Advisory, formerly Greylock Partners, engaged in the FTX bankruptcy efforts on behalf of the debtors.

Among his various tasks over the last month, Ray focused on guiding decisions related to AI company Anthropic, claim statuses, and matters concerning FTX’s operations in Japan. It was disclosed that FTX intends to sell two-thirds of its stake in Anthropic for $884 million as part of its asset liquidation efforts.