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Optimism Sells $90M Worth of Tokens in Private Deal

Optimism Foundation sells $90M worth of governance tokens in a private deal with a two-year vesting period, sparking transparency concerns within the community.

The Optimism Foundation, the entity behind the Ethereum layer-2 blockchain Optimism, has completed a private sale of approximately 19.5 million of its governance tokens. The sale, valued at around $90 million based on the current market price of Optimism (OP) tokens at $4.62, includes a two-year vesting period for the buyer, during which the tokens cannot be sold.

Governance Tokens with Vesting Period

During the vesting period, the purchaser can use the tokens for governance participation but cannot sell them. The tokens were sourced from an unallocated portion of the OP token treasury, constituting 30% of the initial OP token supply, part of the organization's original working budget.

Transparency Concerns

While the details of the private sale and the buyer were not disclosed, leading to some concerns about transparency within the community, Optimism assured its users that these were planned transactions. Ethereum advocate Anthony Sassano expressed reservations about private sales without transparency, while others defended the foundation, noting the need for the team to generate revenue.

Previous Token Sale

This is not the first time Optimism has conducted a private sale of its tokens. In September 2023, the network transferred 116 million OP tokens, valued at about $160 million at the time, after a private sale. Despite concerns that the sale could negatively impact prices, the tokens were subjected to a two-year lockup, mitigating immediate price effects.