Celsius Network, the troubled crypto lender, fully paid off its debt on the decentralized finance (DeFi) lending protocol Aave, freeing up collateral through a maneuver almost identical to one it conducted last week on the rival protocol Maker.
Transactions on the blockchain show Celsius's wallet transferred $8.4 million in Circle’s USDC stablecoin Tuesday afternoon to Aave. The move closed Celsius's loan and freed the remainder of tokens pledged on the platform as collateral against the debt – namely some $10 million in stETH, a derivative type of the ether (ETH) token, $13 million in Chainlink's LINK tokens and $3 million in Synthetix's SNX.
And in what appears to be a separate move, Celsius transferred its known stETH holdings – some 416,000 tokens, or $418 million of worth – to another, unlabeled wallet, a transaction history shows.
Last week, as reported by CoinDesk, Celsius fully paid off and closed its loan on Maker, one of the largest DeFi lending protocols, and freed up $440 million of collateral pledged against the loan, denominated in wrapped bitcoin (wBTC) tokens. Earlier Tuesday, the crypto lender reduced its debt by $95 million on Aave and freed up 400,000 stETH tokens, worth $410 million at the time of publishing, as CoinDesk reported.
What's next for Celsius
Now that the firm has closed its loans from Aave and Maker, Celsius might turn its focus on paying off the last remaining DeFi debt, which is a loan from the Compound lending protocol.
At press time, the wallet linked to Celsius owes some $50 million in USDC stablecoin to Compound, blockchain data firm Nansen's portfolio tracker shows. If Celsius pays off the rest of its outstanding debt, it can unlock 10,000 wBTC tokens currently stuck on the platform, worth $194 million at current market prices.
CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by Block.one; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk offers all employees above a certain salary threshold, including journalists, stock options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.