Crypto exchange Kraken is offering up to $100,000 to anyone who can help solve this year’s biggest blockchain mystery: what happened to QuadrigaCX’s coins?
Kraken announced Thursday it would pay the reward to users who could help it locate the missing funds. Any tips sent to the platform will, in turn, be shared with law enforcement, the company said in a blog post. The reward is payable in fiat or cryptocurrency.
To participate, Kraken is encouraging users to listen to a pair of podcasts that outline both what is already known about QuadrigaCX, the Canadian crypto exchange that collapsed last month, as well as what Kraken’s operators believe happened.
“Kraken is giving up to $100,000 USD (fiat or crypto) as a reward for the tip(s) that best lead to the discovery of the missing $190 million US dollars,” Kraken’s post said.
In fact, according to court filings QuadrigaCX owes roughly 115,000 customers about $137 million in cryptocurrencies and another $53 million in fiat, or $190 million overall (though later filings indicate that there may be additional funds owed, bringing the total as high as $196 million).
The story so far
QuadrigaCX sought protection from creditors following the death of its founder, Gerald Cotten. In court filings, Cotten’s widow, Jennifer Robertsen, said that he was the only individual at the exchange who knew the private keys to its crypto reserves, which were held in cold storage.
Further, while the exchange indicated that the majority of its crypto funds were held in cold storage, it has so far not released any wallet addresses to confirm this.
A cluster of five bitcoin addresses may be associated with Quadriga, according to blockchain analysis, but those addresses only contain roughly 104 bitcoin “inadvertently” sent to cold storage earlier this month.
So far, Quadriga and its court-appointed monitor, Ernst & Young (EY), have unlocked a large chunk of the fiat funds, which were held by various third-party payment processors, after a hearing before the Nova Scotia Supreme Court, which is overseeing the exchange’s case.
Kraken CEO Jesse Powell image via CoinDesk archives