Crypto billionaire Jed McCaleb — a founder of defunct exchange Mt. Gox, Ripple Labs, and most recently Stellar — is nearly finished offloading all of his XRP.
McCaleb has sold almost 2.4 billion XRP so far this year, equivalent to over 25% of his original founder’s reward (9 billion XRP).
In that time, XRP’s price has been extremely volatile, ranging from $0.22 to $1.96 at its peak on April 14 — the token’s highest point in three years.
XRP’s price averages out to $0.82 across days that’ve seen McCaleb sell tokens in 2021.
This makes it likely McCaleb generated about $1.95 billion from XRP sales in the past six months alone.
XRP traded for $0.64 at time of writing, down 67% since the 2021 top.
Ripple Labs forced McCaleb to sell slowly
Indeed, McCaleb will soon be all out of XRP to dump.
This comes years after the extravagantly public fallout between the serial blockchain entrepreneur and Ripple Labs.
McCaleb helped found Ripple Labs (called OpenCoin Inc. at that time) in 2012. He’s now on Forbes’ billionaire list, ranked #1168 with a net worth of $2 billion.
By 2013, tensions with former Ripple chief exec and current board chairman Chris Larsen had run high (according to Observer, which detailed “sex, huge money, fraud, genius, betrayal, international intrigue, and government raids.”)
In 2014, McCaleb left a threatening post on XRPtalk.org claiming he’d soon sell his entire XRP stake, equal to 12% of the token’s supply and worth just $45 million at the time.
“I plan to start selling all of my remaining XRP beginning in two weeks,” he wrote. “Because I have immense respect for the community members and want to be transparent, I’m publicly announcing this before I start.”
“So just [for your information]… [XRP] sales incoming.”
Lawsuits ensued, sales were halted, and settlements were agreed to. In the end, McCaleb could only sell his stash in increasing increments over seven years — which he continues to do.
The 2014 settlement stipulated McCaleb couldn’t sell more than (per CoinDesk):
- $20,000 each week between 2015 and 2017.
- $750 million per year in 2018 and 2019.
- 1 billion XRP overall in 2020.
- 2 billion XRP each year from then on.
But the exact size of his remaining XRP stash isn’t totally clear.
There’s always Ripple in the Taco Stand
Blockchain analytics unit Whale Alert previously calculated McCaleb sold 2.25 billion XRP between 2014 and the end of 2020 for $546 million.
So, McCaleb dumped more XRP in the past six months (2.4 billion) than in the preceding six years (2.25 billion).
Based on Whale Alert’s research and Jed Balance, Protos estimates McCaleb has sold 4.65 billion XRP since 2014 for an approximate value of $2.6 billion.
For reference, XRP is up over 12,000% since 2014.
- Whale Alert found McCaleb still had around 4.7 billion XRP of the settlement left in February 2020.
- McCaleb is believed to have sold 3.6 billion XRP since then.
- This leaves 1.1 billion XRP ($700 million) to go, about 2.3% of XRP’s circulating supply.
At his present rate, Jed Balance reports McCaleb is liquidating 12.7 million XRP ($813,000) daily across a three-month average.
If he keeps that pace up, he’ll be all sold out of XRP by mid-September (in 83 days).
Although, with XRP’s price dropping once again, it seems McCaleb is tapering sales. If he’s indeed slowing up, it could push that final liquidation date back to early December.
In any case (and checkered history aside), McCaleb is one of Ripple’s largest ever holders.
This makes the end of his steady stream of selling pressure a spectacle for all crypto fans — not just XRP investors.
Edit 18:50 UTC, June 25: Clarified rate of sales in paragraph 24 refers to daily average over the past three months.