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FTX-linked Moonstone Bank to Exit the Crypto Space

Following FTX’s demise, the company has opted to rebrand and depart the cryptocurrency sector.

Moonstone Bank, a rural Washington state bank that received an estimated $11.5 million investment from FTX’s sibling business, Alameda Research, has announced its intention to depart the cryptocurrency industry and return to its “original objective” as a community bank.

The bank stated in a Jan. 18 statement that the change in approach is due to “recent events in the crypto assets industry and the shifting regulatory climate around crypto asset enterprises.”

As part of its initiative to “return to its roots,” the bank announced that it will no longer use the name Moonstone Bank and will instead rebrand and re-adopt the Farmington State Bank moniker, which has been known in the local community for 135 years.

According to the bank, the move is expected to take effect in the coming weeks, and local banking customers will not be affected.

Although the bank did not explicitly mention the collapse of FTX in its decision to re-strategize and rebrand, it is believed that these events are related.

Moonstone Bank is rumoured to have been purchased in 2020 by Jean Chalopin, the Bahamas-based head of Deltec, another FTX financial partner. In January 2022, Chalopin purportedly acquired a $11.5 million investment from Alameda Research to turn Moonstone into a crypto-focused financial services organisation.

Farmington State Bank appears to be among the banks hit by FTX’s abrupt implosion.

Cointelegraph reported on January 5 that the FTX disaster has sparked a bank run on Silvergate, forcing the company to liquidate assets at a loss and slash staff by 40% in order to fund $8.1 billion in customer withdrawals. As a result, Silvergate laid off around 200 individuals, accounting for 40% of the overall workforce. Furthermore, the bank scrapped its plans to start its own digital money project.

 

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