Off late, digital asset exchange FTX has been offering bailouts to struggling companies and expanding its operations via acquisitions. The latest firm that FTX is in talks for acquisition is – Bithumb.
FTX-Bithumb M&A Deal
Vidente, which holds a stake in the crypto exchange, has confirmed holding discussions about a potential sale of its stake to the Sam Bankman-Fried’s-led company. It is not known whether there will be a full acquisition of Bithumb or joint management of the exchange.
Earlier reports suggested that discussions on this deal are in the final stages. Following the latest developments, Bithumb joins the list of possible buyouts that FTX is weighing on.
The South Korean cryptocurrency exchange has faced several lawsuits starting in 2020 when its office was raided by authorities as part of an investigation against the former Chairman, Lee Jung-hoon. A year later, the prosecutors indicted Jung-hoon for allegedly swindling $100 million from Kim Byung Gun, chairman of BK Group and founder of a line of cosmetic surgery clinics, following a deal to negotiate the latter’s acquisition of Bithumb Holdings.
The troubled exchange was said to have been put up for sale, as confirmed by the accounting firm – Samjong KPMG – a joint-venture firm that includes Dutch giant KPMG. Soon, many parties were reported to be vying for a stake in Bithumb. One such was the Wall Street behemoth, Morgan Stanley.
However, it denied any potential M&A deal for the crypto exchange and called the reports “untrue.” Amidst the ongoing Terra investigation, Bithumb was one of the seven exchanges in the country to have been raided by the prosecutors. Huobi’s acquisition deal also never materialized.
FTX, on the other hand, has been on an expansion spree and was hailed as the savior of the crypto winter. Last month, it was reportedly considering an acquisition of the trading platform Robinhood. However, SBF later clarified that the exchange had no plans to acquire Robinhoon but was instead “excited about” the business prospects and potential ways of partnerships.
Earlier this month, FTX forged a deal with BlockFi that gives it the option to buy the hobbled crypto lender at a maximum price of $240 million.
However, its deal with Voyager was a failed one after the platform called SBF’s bailout proposal to be a “low-ball bid dressed up as a white knight rescue.”