Parikshit Mishra is the news editor for CoinDesk during the mid Asia and early European hours. He does not have any crypto holdings.
The founder of crypto exchange Huobi Global, Leon Li, is in talks to sell a majority stake in the company in a transaction that would value the firm at $3 billion or more, Bloomberg reported on Friday.
Li is looking to sell almost 60% of the firm, and has held preliminary talks with Tron founder Justin Sun and FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried, the report said, citing people familiar with the matter.
The Seychelles-based Huobi is one of the largest crypto exchanges, with a daily trade volume of over $1 billion, according to CoinGecko.
If concluded, the deal would be one of the biggest ever in the crypto industry. The downturn in the crypto market has forced many of the biggest firms to cut costs and jobs, however this could be the first instance of a majority stake sale by one of the bigger crypto firms.
Huobi’s existing investors, which includes ZhenFund and Sequoia China, were informed about Li’s decision during a shareholder meeting last month, the report added.
A deal could be completed as soon as the end of this month, the report noted. Li is seeking an overall valuation of $2 billion-$3 billion, which means that the stake sale could fetch upwards of $1 billion, the report said.
After the Bloomberg report was published, Huobi’s native token HT jumped nearly 25% to $5.43, hitting a high of $5.80 at one point.
Huobi Global, Tron and FTX did not immediately respond to CoinDesk’s request for comment.
UPDATE (Aug 12, 07:10 UTC): Updates headline. Adds additional details from the report, comment line and token movement.
UPDATE (Aug 12, 07:22 UTC): Updates headline.