Jed McCaleb, one of the co-founders of Ripple, has sold an estimated 135 million XRP tokens over the last few weeks and has around 30.5 million tokens left in his “tacostand” account, according to data from XRPScan.
McCaleb is said to have started working on Ripple back in 2011 and was part of its founding team when the firm launched in 2013. While he left the firm in 2014 to work on Stellar (XLM), he was awarded 8 billion XRP tokens for his role in developing and founding OpenCoin, which was later rebranded to Ripple.
The entrepreneur received the funds on a fixed schedule and has made it clear via XRP Talk, a forum for XRP investors and proponents, that he plans on selling the funds he receives, as he has already donated part of the funds to charities such as Give Directly, Literacy Bridge, and others.
Since then, he has been periodically selling XRP. Data shows he has now recently sold over 135 million tokens, worth nearly $58 million at press time.
McCaleb’s large XRP sales came as the price of the cryptocurrency has been recovering from a massive sell-off over the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC’s) lawsuit against Ripple Labs. The SEC has alleged Ripple and two of its executives “raised over $1.3 billion through an unregistered, ongoing digital asset securities offering.”
The price of XRP hit a high above $0.7 last year, before plummeting over the lawsuit. It dropped to a $0.2 low before recovering and thanks to supporters pumping its price and gaining momentum, it’s now trading at $0.447.
The lawsuit itself is rather controversial. The founder of TechCrunch, Michael Arrington, has questioned the lawsuit against Ripple, arguing the Howey test used to determine if an asset is a security is outdated. Arrington, it’s worth noting, is the founder of Arrington XRP Capital, a digital asset manager launched in 2017 using XRP to invest in blockchain technology.
While most crypto exchanges delisted XRP in response to the lawsuit, others have sided with Ripple, arguing that the SEC’s move hurt XRP investors.
Crypto exchange Uphold pointed out that the SEC’s goal is to protect consumers, and believes it’s hard to see “how a judgment rendering XRP essentially worthless and inflicting billions of dollars of losses on retail investors” would square with that goal.