$1 Billion in Commitments Already Made for Bitfinex's Token Sale, Shareholder Claims

IFinex, Inc., the parent company which manages the operations of both its subsidiaries, Tether Ltd. and embattled crypto exchange Bitfinex, has reportedly acquired $1 billion in “hard and soft commitments” for its initial exchange offering (IEO).

This, according to a Bitfinex shareholder familiar with the matter, who revealed that there’s now a “high possibility” that the exchange operator “will not conduct a public sale” for its crypto token offering, known as LEO.

Hard And Soft Commitments Have Now Reached $1 Billion

Dong Zhao, a prominent Chinese shareholder and large volume over-the-counter (OTC) crypto trader, posted a message on WeChat (a popular Chinese social media network) which stated that the IEO had already received enough commitments to meet its fundraising target of $1 billion.

In statements shared with Coindesk, Zhao noted that the soft commitments received from investors meant that the potential USDT investments had not been locked in, which leaves the option open for backing out from the deal.

Investors Interested In Token Sale, Despite “$850 Million Missing”

Although Bitfinex’s management has still not raised adequate funds to meet the $1 billion fundraising target, the recent update from Zhao reveals that there’s considerable interest in acquiring LEO tokens.

This, despite Bitfinex being accused by the New York Attorney General’s (NYAG) Office of losing $850 million due to mismanagement of funds by Crypto Capital, the exchange operator’s payment processing service provider. The missing funds have reportedly been seized by government officials in Poland, Portugal, and the US. However, it is still unclear exactly why (or if) the funds are being held by authorities.

$20 Million Committed By Renrenbit Users

According to Zhao, his company has made a “hard” commitment by investing in Bitfinex’s IEO, however the Chinese entrepreneur did not disclose the amount invested. At present, Bitfinex’s management has not confirmed exactly how much it has received in investments.

Zhao also claims that users of his crypto-lending app, Renrenbit have so far invested $20 million (hard commitments).

On May 8th, 2019, IFinex announced the release of its whitepaper which confirmed that Bitfinex’s management was seeking to raise up to $1 billion through an IEO. The whitepaper also revealed that IFinex had made net profits of over $700 million during FY 2017/2018.

As explained in the whitepaper, if less than 1 billion LEO tokens are sold, iFinex may sell the remaining tokens after this token sale has concluded.

BIS Digital Currency Hub Chaired by Former Bitcoin Detractor

  • New digital currency division of the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) will be chaired by Benoît Cœuré.
  • Cœuré previously called bitcoin the "evil spawn" of the 2008 financial crisis. 

A former European Central Bank board member who previously made scathing comments about bitcoin will chair a new division of the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) focused on digital currencies. 

According to the press release on Nov. 11, Benoît Cœuré has been appointed to head the BIS Innovation Hub, beginning January 15, 2020. Cœuré, while still an executive board member of the European Central Bank, made headlines last year after telling Bloomberg that bitcoin was the “evil spawn of the [2008] financial crisis.”

Cœuré’s new position will oversee the BIS’s exploration into digital currencies and financial innovation. 

According to the release, 

The Hub's mandate is to identify, and develop in-depth insights into critical trends in technology affecting central banking; develop public goods in the technology space geared towards improving the functioning of the global financial system, and serve as a focal point for a network of central bank experts on innovation.

Agustin Carstens, General Manager of the BIS, said he is “delighted” to have Cœuré lead the Hub, and that the initiative reflects commitment by central banks to lay the foundation for financial innovation. 

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