22nd November 2022 – (New Providence) According to an exclusive REUTERS report, Sam Bankman-Fried’s bankrupt company FTX, his parents and senior executives bought at at least 19 properties worth nearly US$121 million in the Bahamas over the past two years. The properties include luxury beachfront homes, including seven condominiums in an expensive resort community called Albany, costing almost US$72 million.
Earlier, Bankman-Fried has told Reuters he lived in a house with nine other colleagues. For his employees, he said FTX provided free meals and an “in-house Uber-like” service around the island.
Reuters searched property records at the Bahamas Registrar General’s Department for FTX, Bankman-Fried, his parents and some of the company’s key executives. FTX Property Holdings Ltd, an FTX unit, bought 15 properties worth nearly US$100 million in 2021 and 2022. Its most expensive purchase was a $30 million penthouse at the Albany, a resort where Tiger Woods hosts a golf tournament every year. The FTX headquarters is now unoccupied, with furniture pushed against some windows. Its signage has been removed. The plot of land, which cost US$4.5 million, also lies empty.
Meanwhile, FTX spelled out in a court filing over the weekend that neither Bankman-Fried nor the three recently fired members of his inner circle (nor their family members) will see any compensation from the now-bankrupt company. The way Bankman-Fried put it on November 10, the day before FTX filed for bankruptcy and he resigned as CEO, making users whole comes first. “After that, investors—old and new—and employees who have fought for what’s right in their career, and who weren’t responsible for any of the fuck ups,” he wrote on Twitter.
At the time he was still CEO and had not yet announced that the company was filing for bankruptcy.
Since then, FTX has taken steps to distance itself from Bankman-Fried. Bahamian regulators denied and then confirmed that they ordered employees to move hundreds of millions worth of funds in unauthorized transactions the same day the company filed for Chapter 11 protection on 11th November .
Now, the company is making it crystal clear that, at least in this, Bankman-Fried’s words will hold true: “No amounts will be paid under the authority requested by this motion to any of the following persons or any person known by the debtors to have a familial relationship to any of Samuel Bankman-Fried, Gary Wang, Nishad Singh or Caroline Ellison,” today’s filing reads.
An FTX spokesperson confirmed that co-founder and chief technology officer Gary Wang, engineering director Nishad Singh, and Alameda Research CEO Caroline Ellison were terminated on Friday, 18th November, in a Wall Street Journal report.
The very pointed exclusion of Bankman-Fried and his inner circle appeared in a motion from FTX to pay employees what they’re owed for work done before the company filed for bankruptcy and to continue paying compensation and benefits during the court proceeding.
It’s customary in bankruptcy cases for the debtors, in this case FTX, to request permission from the judge to continue paying their employees. After all, the company’s funds are supposed to be frozen. But the new FTX CEO John J. Ray III has noted that it’s been especially difficult to locate all of FTX’s funds and employees.