There had been suggestions that Technical Director Franco Baldini had sanctioned the transfers in place of Villas-Boas, who was sacked on Monday following a string of poor performances.
However, Ferdinand has revealed Villas-Boas gave Baldini his consent to spend a reported £100million in the transfer window, with many of the signings coming in for criticism so far this season
"Most of the signings were perhaps suggestions to him, but he agreed to those suggestions," Ferdinand told US podcast Beyond the Pitch.
"The bottom line is he agreed to all of those signings. It wasn't a case that the players were brought in and he was told 'You have to make a team of these players', because if you're a manager and that happens, you're destined for the sack.
"From speaking to AVB, I understand he was happy that the players came to the club."
Ferdinand believes that Villas-Boas was informed by the board that UEFA Champions League qualification was a requirement, with Spurs currently five points adrift of fourth place.
"We lost Gareth Bale and spent over £100m pounds. When you spend that kind of money you forget the fact that they need to settle in.
"Most players that come into the Premier League need about six months to a year for them to settle in - six months if they hit the ground running.
"But in all honesty, the management and the people above were all saying that qualifying for the Champions League was a minimum."
Meanwhile, interim boss Tim Sherwood believes he could be the man to succeed Villas-Boas despite not knowing if he will be granted a second match in charge of the team.
Sherwood took charge for Wednesday's Capital One Cup defeat to West Ham and the former Spurs captain is yet to hear from chairman Daniel Levy if he will be in charge for Sunday's match with Southampton, but he suggested he is keen on the full-time job
"The immediate future is up in the air, that's as much as I know," Sherwood said.
"I'm up for a challenge. I always have been. I'm very opinionated.
"I know a certain way I need to play. I think I can manage men and deal with them and be honest with them.
"I think the chairman and the football club need to make the correct decision and find the manager who's best compatible to take this football club forward.
"I've got to be in the frame, but it's not my decision, unfortunately."