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Meet Sam Bankman-Fraud… Sorry We Meant Fried

He's not a regular crypto CEO, he’s a cool crypto CEO 😎

Photo: Mario Duncanson/AFP via Getty Images

This CEO went from a $26 billion net worth to filing bankruptcy and getting arrested!

Have you recently become obsessed with scammer stories that have been capturing the zeitgeist recently? Well, then this is the perfect newsletter for you!

Sam Bankman-Fried: The Jordan Belfort of Crypto?

Sam Bankman-Fried is the founder and former CEO of the now-famous (and failed) cryptocurrency exchange, FTX. Sam was also the founder and CEO of the hedge fund, Alameda Research.

But don’t be mistaken. Sam wasn’t a regular CEO, he was a cool CEO – with his shorts, messy hair and laid-back ethics. After the spring’s crypto crash, Alameda was in financial trouble. So, FTX swooped in to save the day. FTX gave Alameda billions of dollars from customer’s deposits… without their knowledge or consent.

Sam’s logic seemed to be: Play dirty, but don’t get caught.

Ultimately, they were caught when their biggest investor and competitor, Binance, sold all their FTX holdings. FTX was left drowning in billions worth of debt, with no cash to pay it back. It was a betrayal only a real frenemy could pull off. So, FTX and Alameda Research were forced to file Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Yikes!

Both companies’ finances were messy, but their workplace culture seemed just as off. More Woodstock and Stratton Oakmont vibes than big-time corporate. Sam and his on-and-off girlfriend and Alameda’s CEO, Caroline Ellison, were dedicated to a good work-life balance. This included polycules and in-house psychiatrists prescribing drugs all during regular business hours. But, their office parties were always kept PG – employees played board games and only drank a quarter of a beer. Sounds like a fun time for high schoolers!

Watch the full SCAMDALOUS episode for Sam’s full story and FTX’s downfall.

Further Viewing 👀

Read Sam's interview with New York Magazine:

Read 10 notable quotes from Sam Bankman-Fried:

Caroline Ellison’s tweet about in-house stimulants:

Check out what was going on in the markets the week the news about Sam and FTX broke:

Watch Larry David’s FTX Super Bowl Ad:

Sam explaining what Alameda Research is:

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