Roughed-up cryptocurrency lender BlockFi – reportedly in talks over a sale to FTX, the crypto exchange led by billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried – has been approached with a competing deal by a group that includes crypto lending peer Ledn, Bloomberg reported late Thursday evening.
Whereas FTX's reported offer is for a full acquisition, Ledn's involves a fresh funding round, according to the report, which cited people with knowledge of the matter. The funding would supposedly be for up to $400 million and include $50 million in equity, which would Ledn a sizable ownership stake in BlockFi.
"Ledn is currently evaluating a number of opportunities to broaden its leadership in digital asset lending and beyond ... At the moment, we cannot share any additional details," Ledn CEO Adam Reeds said in a statement to Bloomberg:
BlockFi didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.
BlockFi CEO Zac Prince on Thursday afternoon took to Twitter to deny news first reported by CNBC that his company had agreed to a sale to FTX for just $25 million. The lender as recently as early June was set to close a funding round valuing it at $1 billion, which itself was a massive decline from its $3 billion valuation in March 2021.
Like other crypto lenders, BlockFi has been hit hard by the sharp downturn in the crypto market that turned into a full panic in June. Prince announced on June 13 that the firm would be trimming roughly a fifth of its workforce, equating to around 170 people. Later in June, Prince said BlockFi had secured a $250 million loan from FTX.
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