FTX Set to Receive $800M from Anthropic Stake Sale, Despite Defunct Status

In a recent court filing on May 31, it was disclosed that the bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange FTX has finalized a deal to sell its remaining stake in the artificial intelligence startup Anthropic for $452.2 million.

FTX is set to gain approximately $800 million from the sale of its Anthropic shares, pending approval from Judge John Dorsey. G Squared, an international venture capital fund, acquired around one-third of the 4.5 million shares for $135 million. Alongside G Squared, more than 20 other venture capital firms participated in the acquisition, including Gemini Ventures, Fund FG-BLU, and Fund SCVC-PV-LXVI.

Initially, FTX had invested $500 million in Anthropic in 2021, securing a 7.8% ownership stake. Anthropic is well-known for its chatbot Claude and aims to develop AI models with enhanced safety measures compared to its competitors like ChatGPT. Founded by ex-OpenAI employees, the startup has attracted substantial investments from major tech companies such as Google.

As FTX works to repay its creditors after declaring bankruptcy in November 2022, this sale could be a significant source of revenue. However, some creditors argue that the shares should have been distributed to FTX customers, whose deposits were used to fund the investment.

Additionally, FTX’s mounting legal fees have come under scrutiny from creditors, who accuse advisors of depleting over $10 billion in creditor value. Recent bankruptcy filings indicate that FTX has accumulated $700 million in legal and administrative expenses. Consulting firm Alvarez & Marsal billed $212 million, while law firm Sullivan & Cromwell charged $202 million. FTX CEO John Ray III invoiced $5.6 million at an hourly rate of $1,300.

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