com drops dogecoin and others from its rewards program and can ftx buy robinhood. We look into whether a deal between the two companies could really happen. Music, welcome to cnbcs crypto world im, tanaya mckeel prices for digital currencies remain fairly flat. Today by noon, eastern bitcoin was worth about twenty thousand dollars. Ether was worth around eleven hundred dollars and uniswap was up about five bucks. Okay on to the top stories, first crypto exchange coinflex is looking to raise more than 40 million dollars. With a new token, the company said it will issue the recovery value usd coin as a means to raise funds and restart withdrawals on the platform. The digital coin will offer 20 interest coin flex halted transactions last week, citing extreme market conditions. The same reasoning celsius gave when it halted, withdrawals on its platform. Next is dropping dogecoin and other cryptocurrencies from its rewards program. In total, the exchange dropped 13 digital coins. From its own platform, which pays customers interest on their crypto, those coins include dogecoin, shiba, inu and tazos, to name a few. The change is happening as crypto exchanges look for ways to weather the bear market. Finally, solana already has competition in the world of crypto phones. Htc just revealed its desire 22 pro smartphone, which includes crypto, nft and metaverse features. The phone is also optimized to work with the companys vr headset, this actually isnt htcs, first crypto phone. It launched the exodus one back in 2018, which included a hardware crypto wallet.

Htc was once a big name in mobile phones, but has lost considerable market share in recent years for our main story of the day, crypto worlds, kate rooney is following reporting that ftx could be in the market to buy robinhood heres. Why that deal could face challenges? Ftx, ceo, sam bankman, free denying reports that the company is looking to buy robinhood that stock up 14. Yesterday, sources ive been talking to are skeptical of an outright deal between ftx and robinhood, but there is strategic rationale or we could end up seeing some sort of partnership model. Another ceo in the industry telling me the cost of acquiring customers in the u.s has roughly tripled from around 60 bucks back in 2020 to 250 dollars per customer. The revenue per user meanwhile has roughly stayed the same. Robinhood has more than 22 million customers so buying robinhood might be a cheaper way for ftx to acquire those customers. Sam bakeman freed has been on a bit of a deal spree and is moving ftx into equities as well. The company just acquired a smaller brokerage, startup weve also reported on some of their ambitions there in the brokerage space and then two recent big time, loans to crypto companies, block fi and voyager. It comes as the price of bitcoin has roughly fallen in half and trading volume over coinbase and robinhood has fallen off sharply this year, ftx has likely seen some of the same slowdown and that calls into question whether ftx could afford this deal.

This is a private company, but the last funding round was roughly 500 million dollars back in january analyst over at jmp securities throwing cold water on this deal as well. They say bottom line conversations appear to be extremely preliminary and while they could progress, we currently view a sale as relatively low probability and we believe a fire sale price is off the table. Ceo vladtenev controls the majority of the voting rights along with the co founder, baiji bot, im told they were not approached or given a heads up about bankman freeds 7.6 percent stake in robin hood. They were caught off, guard im, told, and so any hostile takeover really is out of the question. This is something that robin hoods founders would have to say. Yes to. I spoke to the head of legal at broker chooser about this deal and what it would mean for consumers if it did go through. So i want to talk about the ftx robin a deal. Any obstacles in your mind to getting this deal done, and is this a good thing for the brokerage and crypto uh industry uh? You know this uh, you know the proposed deal is definitely fits neatly into a trend we have observed during the last couple of months. I would say: half a year that the traditional financial world and the crypto world they are coming uh together more closely, and i think it is going to be definitely good. Uh for uh the crypto industry and you know just uh stepping into a regulated market and in addition to that um there are lots of synergies which is going to play out well in our opinion.

So, for example, what i would say is that uh robbie hood is a service provider mainly operating on the retail market, whereas ftx uh as a crypto exchange its user base uh, they are professional traders, so its a nice complement. In addition to that, ruby hood has a much larger customer base about 22 million customers, whereas ftx as a crypto exchange has a user base between one and two million users, and you know when we shouldnt miss the point that these synergies they are coming at. A very attractive price. You know looking at the share price of from youth at this moment, its down approximately uh 75 this year and we shouldnt miss the obvious fact that, after the large and long cryptable market, these crypto exchanges, they are in the money and they would like to. You know spend the dollars wisely. So is this a customer acquisition strategy, then, on on the ftx side, theyre looking to get those 22 million customers that robinhood has at this point absolutely as far as i can see, they are building an integrated platform. You know focusing on professional traders and focusing on media traders as well, and they would like to bring these two different words together. Is it clear that ftx could afford to do this deal? Crypto prices are way down. Weve seen whats happened with trading volume at coinbase and with robinhood ive talked to some people, who have been a little bit more skeptical.

That ftx could finance this deal without a good amount of debt. Is that something you thought about in terms of a potential obstacle here um? I dont think so because when we are looking at the revenues, which is crypto exchanges stacked up uh up until this point, even despite the fact that we are experiencing a bear market in crypto right now, they are definitely in the money. If we are just looking at the numbers, so my guess is that they will be able to afford deal like this. What about any regulatory issues? Could this be seen as anti competitive? Could they run into any anti trust obstacles um, i dont think so. To be honest, so uh robbie, who would it has a large customer bases compared to ftx, but they are not an extremely dominant player on the u.s brokerage market at the moment. So any concerns from a from a competition perspective. I cannot really see any to be completely honest with you, so the regulatory uh issue uh could come from the fact that there is an intensive uh regulatory scrutiny which the crypto industry is under uh at the moment. Is this also a way to get certain regulatory licenses uh? You know how is ftx regulated differently than robinhood? I know theyve tried to move more into equities, but is there anything that would change from a regulatory perspective from these two companies yeah? This could be another synergy, uh on behalf of fdfs ftx, to be completely nuts because ftx composed uh, i think um.

As far as i can remember, three different entities, so you have the main ftx, which is uh based on the bahamas. You have ftx u.s, which is based in the united states, which is a money service business and you have ftx us derivatives, which is a cftc regulated entity. So i think within the merger uh, the bahama based ftx entity will be involved and it is much easier for them to obtain an entity which is already regulated as compared to building up a business line from the ground up and obtaining those regulated licenses, which is Already having okay before we go kathy woods spoke to cnbc today about the bull case for nfts. Take a listen. We do believe that digital property rights, which, which is what nfts represent digital property rights, are going to become incredibly important.