Brian Armstrong has sold every last share of Coinbase common stock that he held since IPO. The last sales were recorded on November 11, quietly occurring as crypto markets focused almost exclusively on the ongoing issues surrounding FTX and Alameda.
A week after the final sale, Armstrong told the Financial Times that he was “just as bullish on crypto as ever.” Clearly, he wasn’t being totally straightforward.
Coinbase, despite being a publicly-traded stock, regulated by the SEC, and trying to present itself as wholly different to FTX and Alameda, hasn’t been faring well: the price of COIN is off almost 90% since IPO.
Earlier this year, analytics firm S&P Global downgraded Coinbase’s credit rating from BB+ to BB, drastically affecting the price of COIN and officially designating the asset as “junk.” The company’s shares were also downgraded by Moody‘s and Goldman Sachs.
Read more: Coinbase: A Boring Story
Funnily enough, co-founder Fred Ersham, who is no longer an active employee at the company, appears to have more shares than any other executive, holding 1,121,844 shares.
Meanwhile, Coinbase is caught up in the biggest mystery affecting the cryptocurrency industry today: where exactly are Grayscale’s 600,000 bitcoins? Both Grayscale and Coinbase refuse to say but they assure everyone that the bitcoins are there. The inability to disclose the public addresses could have something to do with the original GBTC prospectus.
Hopefully, Armstrong’s multimillion-dollar sale will stop the bleeding temporarily — after all, there are only a few hundred thousand shares for other top executives to sell.
Update 17:50 UTC, Nov 21: Many of the shares in question were sold to the Brian Armstrong Living Trust, likely for tax or ownership purposes. While no longer owned by Brian Armstrong individually, the shares are still likely fully under his control.
Edit 18:30 UTC, Nov 21: Headline has been updated to match the article and specify that Armstrong has sold all of his common stock.