Optimism offloads $90M worth of tokens in private deal

    2024.03.08 | exchangesranking | 61onlookers

    Optimism Foundation — the organization behind the Ethereum layer-2 blockchain Optimism — announced it had conducted a private sale of about 19.5 million of its governance tokens. 

    Optimism (OP) tokens are worth about $4.62 on the market, making the number of tokens sold worth around $90 million at the time of writing. While the foundation is offloading a large number of tokens, they mentioned in the announcement that the sale included a vesting period of two years, prohibiting the buyer from selling the tokens before then.

    Within the vesting period, the Optimism Foundation highlighted that the buyer can still use the tokens for governance participation. The foundation wrote:

    “During the lock-up, the purchaser will be able to delegate the tokens to unaffiliated third parties for participation in governance.”

    The organization also explained that the tokens were from an “unallocated portion of the OP token treasury.” The foundation said these assets are part of the organization’s original working budget, which is 30% of the initial OP token supply.

    The foundation informed the community that the OP tokens will be sent in several transactions in the coming days. Optimism assured the community that these were planned transactions, suggesting they were the tokens sold in the private sale.

    Related: $900M in vested tokens set to be released in February

    Optimism did not disclose the details of the sale or the buyer, as the transaction was private. This sparked some discussions on X, with some viewing the sale negatively while others defended the foundation.

    Ethereum advocate Anthony Sassano said that while he loves Optimism and has invested in it, private sales without transparency leave “a bad taste” in his mouth. Meanwhile, other community members argued that the team behind Optimism have to earn a living, too.

    Community members discussing the Optimism private sale. Source: 0xBoboShanti on X.

    This is not the first time Optimism has conducted a private sale of its tokens. On Sept. 21, The network transferred 116 million OP tokens, worth about $160 million at the time, after a private sale it conducted.

    At the time, some observers feared the sale would affect prices negatively. However, the tokens were also subjected to a two-year lockup, meaning they did not immediately impact the token’s price.

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