The crypto exchange FTX is currently seeking a $20 billion evaluation, according to the CEO of FTX Bankman-Fried, and recently told the Financial Times that if FTX were to grow big enough acquiring Goldman Sachs would not be “out of the question”.
The success of the crypto exchange FTX has seen it go from strength to strength, and while it may still not have reached the successes of its competitors Coinbase and Finance, it generated $85 million in fee revenue in 2020 and is expected to generate $400 million in 2021.
FTX doesn’t currently have plans to IPO, but is in the middle of a new funding round and plans to raise up to $1 billion to expand its reach ‘beyond crypto-native market participants’.
In an interview with FT, Bankman-Fried stated that if FTX grew large enough, buying Goldman Sachs would not be “out of the question”.
“If we are the biggest exchange, [buying Goldman Sachs and CME] is not out of the question at all.”
FTX was launched in 2019, and in the three years since the inception of the company, Bankman-Fried has amassed a net worth of $8.7 bn, a tidy sum for a 29 year old. While FTX may be seeking a valuation of $20 billion, it is still quite some distance from being able to acquire Goldman Sachs, currently estimated to have a market cap of $129 billion.
The ongoing funding round will be used to raise “mid hundreds of millions” from institutions, and to further target the retail investor share of the market. And while FTX is not currently looking to list, “we want to be in a position to go ahead if we want to,” adding:
“We are in a fortunate position of not having to do it because we don’t need capital . . . on the other hand there are potentially big advantages to listing such as brand recognition.”
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