FTX’s Anthropic Sale: Triumph Amid Bankruptcy

The FTX bankruptcy estate has recently struck a significant deal, agreeing to sell a majority of its shares in Anthropic, an artificial intelligence startup, to around two dozen institutional investors, resulting in a substantial sum of $884 million. In filings submitted to the court on Friday, it was disclosed that the primary buyer is ATIC Third International Investment Company, a technology-focused investment firm wholly owned by Mubadala, the sovereign wealth fund of Abu Dhabi. ATIC has committed to purchasing 16,664,167 shares of Anthropic from FTX for a sum totaling $500 million. Other notable buyers include Jane Street Global Trading, an affiliate of the former workplace of Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of FTX, as well as undisclosed funds associated with Fidelity Investments and The Ford Foundation.

This sale of Anthropic shares represents a significant triumph for the FTX estate, which had previously promised in January to reimburse customers with 100% of the value of their holdings at the time of the exchange’s collapse. Following the announcement, FTX’s FTT token experienced a notable 10% surge. Notably, FTX and Alameda had initially acquired an 8% stake in Anthropic for $500 million back in 2021. The subsequent boom in the AI sector, fueled in part by the widespread adoption of technologies like ChatGPT, resulted in the value of these shares more than doubling by the time a New York bankruptcy judge granted permission to sell them in February.

This lucrative transaction stands in stark contrast to the distress sales of other FTX assets, such as the offloading of LedgerX for $50 million last year. In 2021, FTX’s U.S. arm had acquired the firm for a considerably higher sum of $298 million. The successful sale of Anthropic shares underscores the resilience of certain investments within the FTX portfolio, despite the challenges posed by the exchange’s bankruptcy proceedings.

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