Ex-FTX boss and co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried received $2.2 billion in payments and loans, mostly from Alameda Research, according to a Wednesday announcement from the failed exchange’s new management.
That figure may appear even more striking when compared to the payouts received by other executives, including former Alameda CEO Caroline Ellison, who only received $6 million.
In total, $3.2 billion was handed out to ex-FTX staff, documents filed by the new management show, with most of it coming from the company’s sister trading firm Alameda Research.
Alameda was at the center of the FTX drama: The quantitative trading firm, also founded by Bankman-Fried, had the ability to use FTX customer assets for its own means, and without oversight, according to newly appointed FTX CEO John J Ray III.
FTX was a massive digital asset exchange which let its customers buy, sell, and bet on the future price of cryptocurrencies. The Bahamas-based entity had 134 companies under its umbrella but went bust in November.
Its sudden bankruptcy was in part due to its management making risky bets with customer cash via Alameda Research, prosecutors allege. Bankman-Fried founded Alameda in 2019 but claims that he stepped away from day-to-day operations of the trading firm in 2021.
This week’s documents show that Bankman-Fried—better known as SBF—received most of the $3.2 billion in payouts reported by FTX’s new management while the company’s former director of engineering Nishad Singh received $587 million, and co-founder Gary Wang received $246 million.
Former FTX Digital Markets co-CEO Ryan Salame was handed $87 million and former co-head of Alameda Research Sam Trabucco got $25 million, the announcement said—adding that it was not including the more than $240 million spent to purchase luxury property in the Bahamas.
Trabucco, it’s worth noting, resigned from his post as CEO of Alameda in August, and hasn’t been heard from publicly since. Authorities have yet to announce charges against the former exec, unlike the rest of Bankman-Fried’s inner circle.
SBF is now facing 12 criminal charges in the United States. Some of those charges were handed down in a superseding indictment last month and include conspiracy to commit fraud on customers of FTX in connection with purchase and sales of derivatives, and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
In January, Bankman-Fried pleaded not guilty to the original charges and now awaits a trial scheduled for October.
Ellison, Wang, and Singh have all admitted to fraud and are cooperating with investigators.
Ellison, who had an on-off romantic relationship with Bankman-Fried, was appointed co-CEO of Alameda along with Trabucco in October 2021. She assumed the role of sole CEO after Trabucco resigned. Ellison gained notoriety following the collapse of FTX after a bizarre Tumblr blog linked to the executive surfaced, revealing a strong fascination with polyamory and race science from the author, presumed to be Ellison.
Meanwhile, billions of dollars in FTX client cash is still currently missing—with a large amount presumed stolen.
John J. Ray III, who is in charge of sorting out failed corporations, has said that the crypto company’s sudden collapse was caused by “a very small group of grossly inexperienced and unsophisticated individuals.”
SBF’s spokesman declined Decrypt’s request to comment.
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