Yes, you read that right. Forbes reports that Chinese private equity firm GSR Capital has signed a letter of intent to invest $270m in blockchain startup tZero, a subsidiary of OG e-commerce giant Overstock.com.
While the $270m alone would be the largest-ever single investment in a blockchain startup (if the deal closes in December as planned), GSR’s total investment will pan out to be much bigger.
Overstocked on Overstock
On top of $270m in exchange for an 18% stake in tZero’s blockchain-based crypto exchange, GSR will take a 10% stake in Overstock, spending just north of $104m for 3.1m shares.
And the fun don’t stop there:
GSR also confirmed an additional $30m as part of tZero’s ICO (which began last December), bringing GSR’s total investment to $404m, and give tZero a valuation of $1.5B — even though they have yet to launch their product.
And, as per usual, Overstock’s CEO is pret-ty cavalier about it
Things have been fairly quiet since Patrick Byrne announced tZero’s ICO filing in December, but GSR’s announcement gave the project a nice little boost, juicing Overstock shares by more than 15%.
While Overstock’s e-tail arm is reportedly in “bad shape,” Byrne, who is also chief executive over at tZero, has made it clear that he intends to double down on blockchain.
When asked what he thinks the huge capital infusion means to tZero and its competitors around the world, Byrne concluded, “It means everyone else just lost.”