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Mike Novogratz’s Galaxy Digital Will Acquire Celsius Owned Custody Platform GK8

Galaxy Digital has won the auction for GK8 – a crypto custody platform to be sold as part of bankruptcy proceedings for the insolvent crypto lender Celsius. 

Galaxy will utilize GK8’s custody solution as it develops GalaxyOne – its own institutional prime offering. 

  •  As announced by Galaxy on Friday, GK8 founders CEO Lior Lamesh and CTO Shahar Shamai will remain to lead Galaxy’s custodial tech business, while providing self-custody solutions for GalaxyOne as well. 
  • “With the backing of Galaxy, we aim to introduce new and exciting offerings to the industry that showcase a combination of Galaxy’s best-in-class services and GK8’s cryptography, security, and unparalleled R&D skills,” said Lamesh on the deal.

  • Company CEO Mike Novogratz said on Friday that GK8’s acquisition marked a “crucial cornerstone” for digital asset storage with Galaxy. GalaxyOne already planned to offer crypto trading, lending, margin, and derivatives products for Galaxy’s institutional investors. 
  • “Adding GK8 to our prime offering at this pivotal moment for our industry also highlights our continued willingness to take advantage of strategic opportunities to grow Galaxy in a sustainable manner,”  he said.

  • The transaction is set to expand Galaxy’s headcount by 40 people, and expand its worldwide reach by adding an office in Tel-Aviv. 
  • Celsius acquired GK8 for $115 million last year but went bankrupt in early July as the crashing crypto market pushed its lending margin positions to the limit. FTX considered a rescue deal for Celsius at the time but walked away after seeing the state of its balance sheet. Today, FTX too has gone bankrupt, alongside other crypto lenders like Voyager and BlockFi. 
  • In the aftermath of Celsius’ collapse, Mike Novogratz admitted that the crypto industry was more leveraged than he thought.

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