Ethereum ICO-era whale address transfers 145,000 ETH weeks before the Merge

The amount of ETH transferred just a month before the Merge has generated community curiosity, with some claiming it’ll be dumped while others say it’s for staking.

An Ethereum whale wallet that participated in the genesis initial coin offering (ICO) and obtained about 150,000 Ether (ETH) in 2014 was activated again on Aug. 14 after three years of dormancy.

The whale address transferred 145,000 ETH to multiple wallets as the price of Ether surged to a new three-month high of over $2,000. The transfers were made in batches of 5,000 ETH, with a few transfers of over 10,000 ETH. The total value of the transferred Ether is over $280 million, and the wallet address currently has a balance of 0.107 ETH.

Ethereum ICO-era wallet transactions. Source: Etherscan

The 145,000 ETH transfer was only the second time the whale wallet has been activated since the ICO, the first being in July 2019 when it sent 5,000 ETH to the exchange Bitfinex while Ether was trading at $219, with the transaction valued at just over a million dollars.

The movement of such a high amount of ETH attracted community attention, with many claiming it could be dumped before the Merge — the official transition of the current proof-of-work-based blockchain to a  proof-of-stake one. However, it is important to note that most transactions are to unknown wallets rather than an exchange.

Even if the whale eventually decides to dump their 145,000 ETH, a $250-million selling pressure isn’t considered significant enough to initiate a market dump. A few others believe that the whale might be trying to stake their ETH to become a validator on the PoS network and generate passive income.

Ethereum’s transition to a proof-of-stake network is slated for Sept. 15, following the successful merge of the Goerli testnet to the Beacon Chain (the PoS chain activated in 2020), the final rehearsal before the official transition.

The Merge is considered one of the most significant upgrades since Ethereum’s inception in 2015. The three-phase transition process began in 2020, and after several delays and testnet integrations, Ethereum is all set to officially transition to PoS in the third week of September.


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