Bankman-Fried says FTX filing for bankruptcy was a mistake – Vox


Nov 17 (Reuters) – The founder of collapsed crypto exchange FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, said he regretted his decision to file for bankruptcy and, in an interview published by Vox, criticized regulators.

Bankman-Fried later said on Twitter that the basis of the interview, an exchange of messages on the same platform, was not meant to be public.

The collapsed company, which filed for bankruptcy last week, named five new independent directors at each of its major affiliates, including Alameda Research. The five new directors and new chief executive John J. Ray struggle to navigate the bankruptcy process.

In the interviewBankman-Fried said officials in FTX’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy process were “trying to burn everything to ashes out of shame” and he had two weeks to raise $8 billion and save the company.

“That’s basically all that matters (raising money) for the rest of my life,” he said.

His biggest mistake had been “Chapter 11. If I hadn’t done this, withdrawals would open in a month with fully booked clients.”

Regulators make everything worse, he added. “They don’t protect customers at all,” he said.

In a statement posted to Twitter, Ray said Bankman-Fried had no permanent role at FTX, FTX US or Alameda Research and did not speak on their behalf.

FTX said it is in contact with dozens of global regulators, including the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.

After Vox published the interview, Bankman-Fried said that some of what he said had been “rash or too strong” and that he was speaking on something that was not intended to be public.

“It’s *really* hard to be a regulator. They have an impossible job: regulating entire industries that are growing faster than their mandate allows,” he wrote on Twitter, adding that the exchange of messages with the Vox reporter was “not intended to be public.”

A Vox spokesperson said all communications with Vox reporters were recorded, unless the subject and reporter agree otherwise.

“Our reporter is clearly identified as such in her Twitter bio, has previously interviewed Mr. Bankman-Fried and, in this case, as an added courtesy, informed him via email that she planned to write about their confidential exchange. He made no objections in his response before publication.”

Bankman-Fried did not immediately respond to a request from Reuters for further comment.

Reporting by Shubham Kalia and Jahnavi Nidumolu in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by Jaiveer Shekhawat; Editing by Bradley Perrett

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