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The Mashinsky's Keep Celling Out
Shamelessly squeezing the short squeezers...
Since the collapse of the Celsius Network, a small group of committed (some might say deluded) individuals have led an attempt to “short squeeze” the Celsius cypto token, CEL. They have been successful in driving up the price of the bankrupt company’s coin from a low of $0.09 to as high as $4.63. The narrative behind this “squeeze” is that there are evil parties, like FTX’s Sam Bankman-Fried, who conspired to destroy Celsius in order to short their token. Of course, there is no substantial evidence for this conspiracy. The recent surge in CEL price can be explained more parsimoniously by the facts that 1) CEL trading is very illiquid after Celsius Network exited the market, and 2) at least 92% of the total CEL tokens in existence are locked in Celsius Network wallets, unable to be withdrawn while the bankruptcy proceeds.
In general, the #CelShortSqueeze community appears to still believe that the founder and CEO of Celsius, Alex Mashinky, is on their side. Alex’s wife, Krissy, has supported this assumption by implicitly supporting the “short squeeze” on Twitter:
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She also had an interesting response when someone suggested that the Mashinsky’s might be profiting from the short squeeze, replying “#bullshit” to their claim:
Incredibly, it appears as though the Mashinsky’s have been taking advantage of this “short squeeze” to squeeze every last cent possible out of their remaining CEL token holdings. We have previously identified address (0x23cE21807…) as one of the Mashinsky’s addresses used to hold and sell CEL tokens. This wallet was initially funded by a wallet we know belongs to Mr. Mashinsky. Additionally, it is one of only four wallets that holds the “USAStrong token,” which appears to be related to Krissy Mashinsky’s USAStrong company.
On April 10, 2022, 0x23cE21807… received a transfer of one million CEL tokens from Celsius Network’s Wallet 6. Subsequently, this wallet proceeded to sell approximately 320,000 CEL tokens via the decentralized exchange (DEX) Uniswap over the next two months, with the last sale on May 25. About 2 weeks later, Celsius announced their withdrawal freeze.
0x23cE21807… then remained dormant until August 5th. The wallet then proceeded to sell 8,200 CEL on August 5th, and 9,275 CEL on August 9th, netting ~$27,000 in USDC. Again, the wallet used the Uniswap DEX for these sales.
Over August, the address also made several large transfers of CEL to two wallets:
0x2c7a1f6408… received 20,400 CEL on 8/5/22, 8,900 CEL on 8/18/22, and 25,000 CEL on 9/10/22. This wallet proceeded to transfer 45,400 of these tokens to the FTX exchange.
0xfd382911b… received 25,000 CEL on 8/29/22. All 25,000 tokens were swapped on Uniswap, netting 11 Eth (~$14,000) and $21,500 in USDC. This address received another transfer of 16,000 CEL today, 9/19/22. These CEL are still sitting in this address at time of publication.
Who owns these downstream wallets? 0xfd382911b… directly links back to both USAStrong and a known Mashinsky wallet. It was initially funded by an intermediary wallet, 0xFD3D91a0B8…. In turn, 0xFD3D91a0B8… was initially funded with 0.04 Eth from the usastrong.eth address. Additionally, it received 1 Ether directly from a known Mashinsky address (indeed, the same address that initially funded 0x23cE21807…!)
The ownership of 0x2c7a1f6408… is unclear; tracing back its initial funding source is not easy due to the funds passing through at least 4 intermediary wallets. However, this address has had many interactions with Celsius, having withdrawn both Tether and USDC from Celsius Network addresses over the last 2 years. Also 0x2c7a1f6408… received a 0.9 Eth transfer from the same wallet that initially funded 0xfd382911b…, demonstrating another link between this wallet cluster.
The total proceeds from these sales are relatively small. However, the fact that tens of thousands of tokens are being sold by wallets directly tied to Alex and Krissy Mashinky should raise some questions, and will likely be of interest both to Celsius Network creditors and the regulators currently probing the firm….
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