Bitmain logo on a computer screen with a stack of Bitcoin

Celsius bankruptcy judge authorizes discount sale of Bitmain coupons

The debtors for Celsius Network have received a court ruling authorizing them to sell, at a substantial discount, coupons for mining firm Bitmain that they hope will be worth approximately $7.4 million.

In his February 16 ruling, United States Bankruptcy Judge Martin Glenn said it was in the “best interests of the Debtors’ estates, their creditors, and other parties” to allow Celsius debtors to sell their Bitmain coupons but added that they are not ‘required’ to sell the vouchers.

Celsius’ interim bankruptcy CEO Christopher Ferraro requested the authorization on behalf of the company and its debtors on February 9, stating in his filing that “while $7.4 million is a significant discount from the Bitmain Coupons’ nearly $37 million face-value, the Debtors believe that such a price is commensurate with the market and preferable to the Bitmain Coupons expiring worthless in the Debtors’ possession.”

The coupons offer buyers of mining rigs a 10%-30% discount on future purchases from Bitmain Technologies—maker of the Antminer range of mining rigs—but in his request to sell the coupons, Ferraro stated that “I do not foresee the Debtors being interested in using the Bitmain Coupons to acquire Mining Rigs.”

Ferraro also stated that “based on the Debtors’ marketing efforts for the sale of similar assets, the Debtors anticipate that selling the Bitmain Coupons at a significant discount to their face-value is required,” especially since they will have no value if allowed to reach the end of their six-month expiry date without use.

Celsius bankruptcy

Celsius Network was a digital asset lender that offered customers high interest rates on their digital currency deposits and the ability to borrow against their digital assets. The company flourished between March 2020 and June 2021 based on some questionable–at best–business strategies. However, like many in the interconnected digital asset space, its internal flaws were exposed in the market crash that came in the wake of the 2022 FTX crisis, and the company spiraled into bankruptcy.

This latest ruling in the Celsius’ bankruptcy saga comes a day after it announced, at a court hearing on Wednesday, it will seek to exit bankruptcy under the guidance of asset manager NovaWulf Digital Management, which will take over the operations of a new company that will be owned by Celsius customers.

This provides a ray of light for Celsius investors, who will hope the insolvent company’s proposed deal with NovaWulf will allow it to exit Chapter 11 and eventually return digital assets to customers, something Celsius’ attorney Ross Kwasteniet said at Wednesday’s hearing in Manhattan, might be possible by June this year.

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