Quebec Pension Writes Off $150 Million Bet On Crypto Lender Celsius

The Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec has written off a $150 million U.S. investment in bankrupt cryptocurrency lender Celsius Network.

Quebec’s public pension fund manager, which has nearly $400 billion under management, said it invested money in the cryptocurrency sector “too soon” and that the collapse of cryptocurrency companies such as Celsius shows that the industry is “in transition.”

Celsius filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in July, saying its liabilities exceed its assets by more than $1 billion U.S. after a crash in prices for digital coins and tokens.

Montreal-based Caisse de Depot reported a 7.9% loss in this year’s first half. Its net assets declined by $28.2 billion to $391.6 billion ($303 billion U.S.).

The fund’s fixed income portfolio dropped 13.1% in the first six months of the year, while its holdings of stocks and private equity suffered declines of 16% and 2.4%.

However, strong returns in real estate and infrastructure helped offset some of the losses. Caisse de Depot said its real estate holdings gained 10.2% in the six months ended June 30.