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This Week on Crypto Twitter: BlockFi and 3AC Try to Clear the Air, CZ Jumps the Gun

17 Jul, 20225 min readBlockchain
This Week on Crypto Twitter: BlockFi and 3AC Try to Clear the Air, CZ Jumps the Gun

As markets began leveling off from a freefall, Crypto Twitter spent a bit more time discussing the latest bailouts.

At the beginning of the month, Voyager filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy shortly after revealing in June that it had a $661 million exposure to Three Arrows Capital (3AC), a crypto hedge fund that itself filed for Chapter 15 bankruptcy on the first of the month after failing to meet margin calls.

This week, Celsius became the latest lender to throw in the towel, filing for bankruptcy little more than a month after it had frozen withdrawals to “stabilize liquidity.”

Zac Prince, CEO of crypto lender BlockFi, which has been battling rumors of insolvency for over a fortnight, took to Twitter to stress that his company is not in the same boat.

1/2 PSA to journalists + market commentatorsIt's time to stop putting @BlockFi in the same bucket / sentence as Voyager and Celsius. Two months ago we looked the "same". They shut down and have impending losses for their clients.— Zac Prince (@BlockFiZac) July 11, 2022

Coinshares Chief Strategy Officer Meltem Demirors joined the thread, saying BlockFi was holding shares in Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), an investment product for institutional investors who want exposure to Bitcoin without the risks of directly holding it. GBTC is currently trading at a 30% discount to BTC.

Prince said nah.

Hey Meltem 🙂Just fyi - BlockFi directly holds zero GBTC. The Bloomberg data on this is outdated. We have a couple small loans (like sub $10M) w/ GBTC as collateral that are in the process of winding down— Zac Prince (@BlockFiZac) July 11, 2022

On Tuesday, 3AC co-founder Su Zhu broke his month-long Twitter silence to post screenshots of a recent email from Advocatus Legal LLP, the firm hired by 3AC, that was sent to legal representatives of the firm’s liquidators. In the letter, 3AC’s lawyers asked the liquidators at Teneo whether they mentioned in their July 8 filing to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court the “threats of physical violence” that the 3AC founders and their families were receiving.

Sadly, our good faith to cooperate with the Liquidators was met with baiting. Hope that they did exercise good faith wrt the StarkWare token warrants. — Zhu Su 🔺 (@zhusu) July 12, 2022

Crypto hedge fund Defiance Capital posted a statement denying involvement with 3AC, while at the same time confirming it had been “materially affected” by the crisis.

Our statement on recent event. — DeFiance Capital (@DeFianceCapital) July 15, 2022

NFT market OpenSea also announced it was having problems.

Today is a hard day for OpenSea, as we’re letting go of ~20% of our team. Here’s the note I shared with our team earlier this morning: — Devin Finzer (dfinzer.eth) (@dfinzer) July 14, 2022

Elsewhere, personal finance YouTube guru Nate O’Brien was trying to spread FUD about Coinbase. DeFi developer LukeYoungBlood.eth quickly dispatched a neat counter argument.

FUD much? Look at the fucking balance sheet. They have over $10b in deposits for under $10b in customer liabilities. Unlike other crypto companies that are non-public they have to report this accurately and follow GAAP (generally acceptable accounting practices).— LukeYoungblood.eth (web3,web3) (@LukeYoungblood) July 16, 2022

‘Spreading panic’

On Monday, a phishing scam offering a fraudulent airdrop managed to rob Uniswap users of over 7,500 Eth, at the time worth about $8 million.

Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao publicly tweeted about the incident before contacting Uniswap, alleging that the DEX protocol was exploited. CZ got it wrong, and later, after clarifications from the Uniswap team, he confirmed that it was indeed a phishing scam.

Our threat intel detected a potential exploit on Uniswap V3 on the ETH blockchain. The hacker has stolen 4295 ETH so far, and they are being laundered through Tornado Cash. Can someone notify @Uniswap? We can help. Thanks— CZ 🔶 Binance (@cz_binance) July 11, 2022

The U-turn prompted fierce criticism.

This seems like an incredibly irresponsible thing to tweet, it was a phishing campaign, not an exploit of Uniswap v3 code— ChainLinkGod.eth (@ChainLinkGod) July 11, 2022

Blockchain sleuth FatManTerra was among CZ’s detractors.

Let's agree to disagree. I personally think when you have an audience of 6M people you should not go around spreading panic without verifying your story first.— FatMan (@FatManTerra) July 11, 2022

Elsewhere

Chris Maddern, CEO of Floor NFTs, posted some surprising news about Gamestop’s new Ethereum-based NFT marketplace: In 48 hours after launching, Gamestop saw twice the trading volume of Coinbase’s NFT marketplace, which has been open since May.

GameStop is set to do more NFT volume in their first 48 hours than Coinbase NFT has since launch…We live in a weird world.— Chris Maddern (@chrismaddern) July 13, 2022

In other NFT news, Hollywood legend Bill Murray bought a Cool Cat.

Welcome to the Cool Cat fam, Bill Murray! ✨️ — Cool Cats (@coolcatsnft) July 12, 2022

American actor and comedian T.J. Miller thinks you’re not doing it right if you’re not buying the dip.

If you don’t buy even a MODICUM of the dip, and you are in crypto, then you are bad at crypto.Buy some BTC, buy some ETH, and then look back with pride when the bull market arrives. Also stop eating ground chicken. It’s dangerous. 🚫🐓🫡🪙👏 — t.j. miller (@nottjmiller) July 14, 2022

Finally, economist and gold peddler Peter Schiff said he would accept Bitcoin for his San Juan-based online bank, Euro Pacific, after financial regulators in Puerto Rico recently shut it down for “inadequate capital levels” and a lack of compliance that could aid money launderers.

Actually yes, I would sell the bank for anything if regulators let me sell it. My main goal is protecting customers.— Peter Schiff (@PeterSchiff) July 8, 2022

“My main goal,” Schiff said, “is protecting customers.”

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