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FTX co-founder and CEO Sam-Bankman Fried is open to acquisitions of troubled crypto miners in order to help stem contagion in the crypto industry, he told Bloomberg in an interview Friday.
“When we think about the mining industry, they do play a little bit of role in the possible contagion spread, to the extent that there are miners that were collateralizing borrows with their mining rigs,” Bankman-Fried said. “There might come along a really compelling opportunity for us – I definitely don’t want to discount that possibility.”
To be sure, Bankman-Fried tweeted that he wasn’t “particularly looking at miners, but sure, happy to have conversations with any companies,” following the publication of the story.
Private and publicly listed crypto miners are facing margin calls and defaults after having racked up debts anywhere between $2 billion to $4 billion to finance the construction of their gargantuan facilities across North America, according to data compiled by CoinDesk and industry participants.
FTX just announced on Friday that it had made a deal with crypto lender BlockFi to provide BlockFi with a $400 million credit facility and potentially acquire it for as much as $240 million. And Alameda Research, which is owned by Bankman-Fried, had previously extended a cash/USDC loan of $200 million and a revolving credit facility for 15,000 bitcoin ($294 million) to beleaguered crypto exchange Voyager Digital.
Shares of many publicly-traded mining companies are down by 75% or more year to date.
UPDATE (July 1, 21:54 UTC): Added Bankman-Fried's tweet in second bullet point.