On Jan. 10, DCG CEO Barry Silbert reflected on the state of the crypto industry and the increasing waves of speculation about his firm in the wake of the FTX fallout and contagion.
Silbert acknowledged that 2022 was a tough year and DCG and its subsidiaries were not immune to the effects of the present turmoil.
In a veiled stab at the critics, he added that it has been a challenging one.
“It has been challenging to have my integrity and good intentions questioned after spending a decade pouring everything into this company and the space with an unrelenting focus on doing things the right way.”
I’ve been reflecting quite a bit about the past year, the state of the industry and where things go from here.
Here is an update to address those reflections, other developments and some speculation about @DCGco (1/10)https://t.co/xEohthubvD
— Barry Silbert (@BarrySilbert) January 10, 2023
DCG Under Fire
Digital Currency Group has been in the spotlight recently as it is the parent company of the embattled Genesis crypto lending firm. It is also the parent company of Grayscale, the world’s largest crypto asset fund manager.
Genesis suspended loan originations and redemptions in mid-November, causing problems with the Gemini exchange, which had $900 million in outstanding loans with the firm.
Earlier this month, Gemini co-founder Cameron Winklevoss gave Silbert an ultimatum to pay up what was owed. On Jan. 10, Winklevoss called for the removal of Silbert as CEO, claiming that he has been unwilling to find a solution.
In his own letter, Silbert said DCG owed Genesis Capital $447.5 million and 4,550 BTC (worth roughly $78 million), which matures in May 2023. DCG borrowed $500 million between January and May 2022 at interest rates of 10%-12%, he added.
Regarding the relationship with FTX, he said DCG made a small equity investment of $250,000 in the defunct exchange’s Series B in July 2021.
“DCG held a trading account with FTX with less than 1% of all our trading volume transacted on that platform,” he continued.
DCG also has shares in Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), and it is this that has rattled observers. According to a Nov. 24 report from the Financial Times, DCG has bought $722 million worth of GBTC since March 2021.
Furthermore, the investment was funded by loans from Genesis. Grayscale’s BTC Trust is currently trading at a discount of -38.5%. Silbert concluded that the firm is still current with its loan repayments.
“DCG has not borrowed from Genesis Capital since May 2022, has never missed an interest payment, and is current on all loans outstanding.”
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