The "disappearance" of billions of ADA from IOG

Seems like it yes:

Coinbase and Coinbase Custody are not the same thing. Anyways - The announcement was the latest I found on google about it, so it seems to not be available still.

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Most of these can probably be inferred just by thinking about IOG as a business, just like a lot of other businesses.

Imagine a company that builds transport links for “coffee” farmers and gets paid in “beans”. Maybe some of those coffee beans are given away as free samples to build demand, some are sold to pay for operations, some of them go to providing an inventory to coffee shops that want to open but don’t have enough stock yet. It turns out that opening a coffee shop creates a marketplace to form around the community, leading to formation of the new types of businesses to form, which reinforces the demand for coffee.

and then you have a bunch of people sitting around drinking their coffee, thinking this beverage has potential - I wonder where those original beans went?

(admittedly, it’s an imperfect analogy - but I am definitely not at liberty to discuss any specifics about what or who any partnerships or investments are with.)


But: Regarding Cardano, IOG (together with Emurgo and CF) is not like a lot of other businesses. If one of the three founding entities (which are still very prominently featured as such everywhere) fucks up, then the risk is high that the whole network fucks up.

Quite analogous: The disastrous support for Yoroi is a much bigger problem than the disastrous support for Nami, precisely because Emurgo is one of the founding entities and should live up to that responsibility.

So, attempts at some more scrutiny might be understandable.

I would argue that the release of Nami makes any support issues with the other wallets much less of an issue; there is a built in resilience in an open platform where the the direction and scope of the work on the platform can move in directions that the original designers would never have imagined - and the tools that develop over time will reflect (and even drive) that change.

I think Charles had a great talk about this at the last summit; not Nami specifically, but that the platform has very much started to grow and evolve beyond the founding entities.


That’s fair. There is the possibility that IOG signed some sort of NDA with Coinbase that would prevent them from providing some information. However, they did promise us transparency regarding those funds. Why would they sign something that would contradict their own beliefs and statement? Are they changing the position of their own transparency policy? If so, at the very minimum they should give us an update on that.

Let’s assume that IOG did sell a large amount of ADA after the Cardano summit pump. Likely, such action is currently LEGAL in the US. However, I am questioning the ethics of such decision. Would you agree that it’s unethical for IOG to hype up the community with all the news and partnerships and then turns around and sell a large amount of ADA back to the retail investors? This is the very definition of pump and dump.

Assuming that IOG purposely sold their ADA after the news hype and price hike:

  • They would be knowing manipulating the market
  • Took advantage of the community’s trust
  • Decided to put profit over ethics
    All of this has nothing to do with whether IOG is a separate entity.

It would be impossible for us to know 100% that IOG did indeed sell their ADA after the summit. That’s why I am here and asking for more clearly, hoping that IOG would prove to me(and some others) that the suspicions were wrong.

Would you say that it’s reasonable for us to request a formal acknowledgment of such concerns from the company and ask them to make an official public announcement stating that “We did not sell a very large amount of ADA after the Cardano summit, and knowing manipulated the market?” Such statement will have legal binding, and it would be very suspicious to me if they choose NOT to make the statement.

To the best of my knowledge everything discussed in summit was true and accurate and released in good faith - not as an attempt to mislead or deceive. If you have an actual basis in fact to think that anything was deliberately falsified or untrue - I would really like to know it. (I will get to the bottom of that.)

You seem unclear on what actual market manipulation is - like mud you are throwing around to see if anything sticks, without any deeper understanding of what you are talking about.

Your post is a form of market manipulation called “Stock Bashing”, which generally takes the form of releasing false or misleading information on forums. It is the type of thing which legal activity could be taken for.

As someone is actively, knowingly and repeatedly engaging in the very activity that you are groundlessly accusing other people of - there is no point in issuing any statement. You are clearly acting in bad faith - not as someone seeking to clarify the situation of engage in dialogue but asking for information that is unlawful for me to provide to you, and that acting like not complying with your illegal request is suspicious.

(joke comment)
Let me be clear: I have an ETHICAL problem with you. Not only are you acting ILLEGALLY by engaging in market manipulation - you are acting duplicitously is accursing other people without evidence. You are not engaging in the dialogue in good faith - you are the person here is is continuing to spread misinformation.

Please submit to the forums your bank details, two forms of government identification and a complete list of all cryptocurrency transactions to prove that this is not the case. I would find it incredibly suspicious if you are not able to do so - and so should everyone else.
(/joke comment)

I would very much like to see that.

For wallet apps, there were good third-party ones before Nami (actually good ones, not ones that keep all community support channels blocked 24/7, when people start using them).

For the core, the node and to a lesser extent the cli, it looks much more dark. It would really be good if IOHK could provide much better documentation to facilitate other people working on it, forking it, providing alternative implementations, so that also that part transitions into the community. Up to now, we are basically dependent on you guys 100%.

(…, which – again: up to now – highlights IOHK’s special role in this ecosystem, justifying some greater extent of scrutiny … scrutiny, not FUD and mud!)

I will pass that information along; I have many of the same frustrations. I do a lot of work to understand economic activity both on and off chain (rather than the part of the group that builds the blockchain) and the lack of good APIs is a challenge.

I can’t mention enough; if you aren’t familiar with their tools, check them out


What false or misleading information did I write? I have been asking for an answer to a question that you have yet to give. The last time I checked, asking a question is perfectly legal, and it falls under freedom of speech.

Tell me how am I acting in bad faith if my very first message of this post is to ask nicely for clarification? You chose to attack me nonstop since the very first reply. Who is acting in bad faith here?

You seem unclear on what the definition of accusation is. Tell me where did I accuse anyone of anything? I said that I find the situation suspicious, and I asked for answers. Please note that this is very different from what you are doing to me - an accusation of market manipulation.

You did everything in your power to dodge the simple question and then threatens me with legal action. You are soliciting me to provide my private information(illegal) AND accusing me of market manipulation(not true, illegal).

Any sane person here knows who is in the wrong here. A total of 673 people upvoted the 2 Reddit posts, and I know for a fact that many more people &SPOs out there are wondering the same exact thing.
I want to remind you that you will need proof to back up all your accusations against me in court. I have saved screenshots of this post and edits, downloaded every public videos, and saved many statements relating to IOG that were made in the past. Go ask your lawers, and see if they think your company has a strong case.
I will not back down to bullies, especially companies that use legal letters to scare off other private individuals. I have personally gone through and seen too many of these behaviors.

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Stop deflecting and post your bank account details and tax forms already; until you do so it’s proof of your bad actions. I am still waiting for your response.

(I am paraphrasing your post - it’s half joking - you are asking for something unreasonable.)

  • They would be knowing manipulating the market
  • Took advantage of the community’s trust
  • Decided to put profit over ethics

This part I am not joking on - allegations of wrong doing need to be backed up by facts. You can’t accuse someone of that and then follow up with “prove the non-existence of something that doesn’t exist” This is (at best) along the lines of libel or defamation, at the worst, an actual attempt at market manipulation - because that is what market manipulation actually is - producing and then profiting off of false or misleading information.

(If you come to me with facts, instead of shadowy allegations that have no basis in reality, I can and will act on those. If there was any evidence of anything untrue, deliberately misleading or falsified - please let me know. These are things we can and will get to the bottom of)

I will not back down to bullies, especially companies that use legal letters to scare off other private individuals. I have personally gone through and seen too many of these behaviors.

You seriously need to have a long hard look in the mirror. (not joking there either)

I don’t feel entitled to know what IOG does with their Ada any more than than I feel they are entitled to know what I do with my Ada.

I would think we should have an accounting of the foundation’s Ada however. Are the finances of a Swiss Foundation publicly available?

I don’t think there is any real secret about what we do with our Ada generally - we have an hour long show every month that highlight all the cool stuff we are doing. Some of those things we aren’t ready to talk about yet, but in principal, we try to be fairly open about stuff like that.

However, no company in the world is just going to open up its financial statements, or history of transactions, to a bunch of forum posters who want to go on some open ended fishing expedition to see if I can find something to criticize them for.

There is ALWAYS something for people to complain about, everything we do has some opportunity cost associated with it - something we didn’t do because we had to make a choice. It’s just an utterly ridiculous thing to ask for - especially when the people asking have every appearance of doing so in bad faith and are actively looking for problems.

(Catalyst is the area where the transparency is the most needed, and the part of the ecosystem where this kind of request would be more reasonable.)


Stock corporations (which IOG is not, as far as I know) do have some obligation to make their finances public, not in detail, of course, but nobody asked for a breakdown up to each employee’s individual salary. The topic is not IOG’s complete finances, but the huge pile of ADA it got at the very beginning.

And you have ignored that IOHK itself once was much more transparent about them, even called Emurgo and CF to be equally transparent about their share and said: “We will make a follow-up statement when funds are moved to a custom vesting address.”

So, there is at least a change of policy, here. They once were left lying around untouched and open for everyone to see. If they now go into daily operations (hopefully over a long time, burning one billion in a year would seem bold), that’s perhaps all the information that is needed.

To me it looks like the OP and you got each other on the very wrong foot from the beginning. From the OP:

Might be lip service in bad faith, but I haven’t read it that way.

Second that!

I would definitely say it’s UNreasonable. Holding ADA does NOT entitle you to shake down contractors/companies hired by Cardano Foundation for private information or to force them to make any statements (legally binding or otherwise).

IOG said they would voluntarily update what happened with vested ADA from 2017

And IOG voluntarily updated this in 2020 as you can see from Coinbase custody video posted above.
They voluntarily gave the info and updated it and since it was voluntary they decided what level of detail they gave. That’s all there is to this.

The only unethical behavior I see in this whole thing is people trying to impose their will on independent and private enterprise trough means of scandalmongering in face of not getting what they want.


Are we not talking about the same permanent, immutable blockchain that has a record of all transactions - and in the context of people stepping through these looking transactions? You’ve totally lost me when you started talking about “not complete finances” when you are talking about a company that is compensated in a crypto asset…

Alright, I am going to drop it.
I would like to clarify that there was never an attempt to bash anybody, entity, or spread “FUD.”
I was just simply asking a question that I do not know. I am allowed to ask, and IOG is allowed not to answer.
That’s that. Thanks everybody for the replies. :slightly_smiling_face::+1:

Oh, and just to be 100% clear.
There is NO evidence that I can see that would suggest IOG sold any ADA at any time. I(and the original Reddit poster) have never claimed that such evidence exists.

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Perhaps, this would have gone better if the first reply would have been:

As announced in, IOG has moved their ADA to Coinbase Custody. The 1.X billion ADA leaving the IOG private pools during 2021 seen in are just that: Funds moved to Coinbase Custody.
While the details of the company’s finances cannot be made public, allegations that they were “pumped and dumped” are completely baseless. Most of them are simply still in custody.
Moreover, the often cited also says: “The final third of IOHK’s Ada will be made available after June 1st of 2019.” So, IOG is free to do everything they want with these funds for two and a half years, now, even by that voluntary statement.

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You can track the wallets and delegations of the Cardano Foundation on in real time.

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I thought as much thank you!