Hashed Wallet Takes $3.5B Hit, Delphi Digital Discloses Loss After Terra's LUNA Collapse

Delphi says the LUNA tokens accounted for 13% of its assets under management at their peak, while Hashed appears to have lost over $3.5 billion.

AccessTimeIconMay 19, 2022 at 10:28 a.m. UTC
Updated May 23, 2022 at 2:03 p.m. UTC

The collapse of the tokens linked to the Terra ecosystem, stablecoin terraUSD (UST) and Luna (LUNA), has led to some major investors coming clean and detailing their losses. Two more backers of Terra are disclosing exactly how their balance sheets have been affected.

Delphi Digital, a research firm and boutique investor, said in a blog post that it always had concerns about the structure of UST and LUNA, but believed that the sizable reserves in the Luna Foundation Guard, a nonprofit that supports the Terra network, would prevent the unthinkable from happening.

“We always knew something like this was possible, and we tried to stress the risks to a system like this in our research and public commentary, but the fact is we miscalculated the risk of a ‘death spiral’ event coming to fruition. We’ve taken some heat for this over the last week, and we deserve it. The criticism is fair and we accept it,” the firm wrote.

The firm wrote that in the first quarter of 2021, Delphi Ventures Master Fund purchased a small amount of LUNA, worth 0.5% of its net asset value (NAV) at the time. That position grew as LUNA’s value increased and the fund increased its holdings, including a $10 million investment in the LFG’s funding round in February. That investment is now worthless.

While Delphi said that it didn’t sell any LUNA, it’s now sitting on “a large unrealized loss.”

Delphi was once a believer in the LFG’s ability to counterbalance any risks from the LUNA-UST relationship, but ultimately, LFG’s holdings weren't enough to be an effective backstop once the price of bitcoin (BTC) began to quickly decline earlier in the quarter. The foundation had purchased a large amount of bitcoin to help support LUNA and UST.

“We believed a high level of external collateralization was a necessity in the long run, and we saw this as a path to get there. Unfortunately, it didn’t grow fast enough compared to UST supply, and, combined with a fall in value of the BTC reserves, the liability overhang was too large to be defended,” Delphi wrote.

Hashed hit hard

One of Terra’s other prominent backers is Hashed, an early-stage venture fund based in Seoul, South Korea. The company invested in TerraForm Labs’ $25 million venture round in 2021, according to Crunchbase data.

“We were immediately impressed with the sophistication of their mechanical design and execution speed,” Hashed wrote about Terra in 2019. “They’ve done a superb job executing: building product, hiring, facilitating and interacting with the community, and more.”

Publicly, Hashed has said that it is “financially sound” and Hashed Ventures hasn’t been affected by the crisis.

Hashed didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment, but on-chain data shows that the firm had staked over 27 million in LUNA on the Columbus 3 mainnet, 9.7 million in LUNA for the Columbus 4 mainnet and 13.2 million in LUNA on the current Columbus 5 mainnet.

CoinDesk - Unknown

Terra's blockexporer for the Columbus-3 mainnet shows Hashed had significant holdings of Luna (Hubble blockexplorer)

All in all, Hashed’s losses amount to over $3.5 billion using pricing data from early April.

Local media in South Korea report that more than 200,000 investors in the country hold Terra-related tokens.

South Korea’s newly elected president, Yoon Suk-yeol, is pro-crypto and has promised a regulatory framework for the asset class, which analysts say will likely be introduced at an accelerated pace given the scale of the crisis caused by Terra.

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