Binance.US buys Voyager assets at just over $1 billion
Binance.US, the American arm of the world’s largest crypto exchange by volume, has acquired assets of Voyager Digital for just over $1 billion.
In a Monday press release, Voyager said the takeover sets a clear path forward to unlock Voyager customer funds at a to-be-determined date in the future. The bankrupt crypto lender added that Binance.US provided the “highest and best bid for its assets after a review of strategic options”, which includes its crypto portfolio and a further $20 million in “additional consideration.”
The winning bidder will make a $10 million in “good faith deposit” and will reimburse Voyager for certain expenses up to a maximum of $15 million. Binance.US has until April 18, 2023 to finalize the acquisition, otherwise Voyager will move these additional fees to customers after a one-month extension. Until then, Voyager will seek bankruptcy court approval for the deal at a hearing on January 5.
TSX-listed Voyager Digital filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy nearly four months ago following the crash of major crypto tokens TerraUSD and Luna. In September, FTX.US won the auction to purchase the assets of Canada’s digital assets broker with a bid of just over $1.42 billion. But the implosion of FTX and its associated entities has left the bankrupt crypto lender without a buyer.
Binance had emerged before as one of the highest bidders for Voyager Digital’s assets. That came after Voyager’s bankruptcy lawyers rebuffed an approach by Bankman-Fried to buy the assets, describing an offer as a “lowball bid dressed up as a white knight rescue”.
Following FTX’s collapse, Voyager reopened the bidding process and its board was reportedly in active discussions with alternative bidders. The company also claims it did not transfer any assets to FTX in connection with the previous sale agreement.
Voyager, which counts more than 100,000 creditors and billions of dollars in liabilities, was caught out by the collapse of crypto hedge fund Three Arrows Capital, suffering losses of more than $650 million.
Voyager has been thrown a lifeline from Sam Bankman-Fried, offering to provide its customers with early-access liquidity. Under the proposed restructuring deal, FTX.US wanted to buy all of Voyager’s crypto assets and loans in cash at market value, except the loans to bankrupt crypto hedge fund Three Arrows Capital.
In response, Voyager’s bankruptcy lawyers entered a public spat with Sam-Bankman Fried whose offer was described by them as harmful, highly misleading and only benefits FTX.
At the time, SBF responded by saying that his plan would give Voyager’s customers the ability to access assets that would otherwise be locked up for a significant time. He added that only the bankruptcy lawyers would benefit from dragging out the proceedings as the case navigates through bankruptcy court, while the customers would “get fucked.”