FTX's Final Days: SkyBridge Founder Scaramucci Discusses Meeting with Bankman-Fried in Bahamas
SkyBridge Capital founder Anthony Scaramucci has spoken about his visit to the Bahamas to meet Sam Bankman-Fried, the disgraced CEO of now-defunct crypto exchange FTX, during the firm's final days.
In early November last year, Scaramucci flew to the Bahamas to personally talk to Bankman-Fried after it was revealed that the now-bankrupt exchange might be on shaky financial grounds, he said during Consensus 2023 conference on Thursday.
Scaramucci said he found a "war room" of FTX executives there, adding that it was clear that a small group of individuals at FTX had done something wrong.
He compared the catastrophic collapse of FTX to that of Bernie Madoff's infamous Ponzi scheme, arguing that it is only plausible to commit such crimes with a small group of people.
“It's very hard to commit a crime like this with a large group of people because … there's always a person of conscience that comes out and says, ‘Hey, I don't want to do this.’”
At the center of the war room was Bankman-Fried, who apologized to Scaramucci and claimed that FTX's financial troubles were due to mislabeling, he recalled.
Despite the collapse of FTX, Scaramucci claims that SkyBridge has not been affected as much as some media outlets have suggested.
The firm reportedly has ample cash on hand and cryptocurrency reserves. “Some people in the press have written a couple of obituaries about SkyBridge, but I think our demise is greatly exaggerated," he said.
Scaramucci acted as a mentor and partner to Bankman-Fried, coordinating the crypto wunderkind’s fundraising trips in North America and the Middle East.
In early 2022, FTX also bought 30% of SkyBridge Capital.
However, following the exchange's implosion, Scaramucci said he intended to buy back the stake from Sam Bankman-Fried.
FTX Recovers Over $7B with a Relaunch in Sight
As per the latest developments in the FTX sage, the exchange's new management has managed to recover over $7.3 billion in cash and liquid crypto assets, an $800 million increase from the last report, according to Andy Dietderich, an attorney for the company.
"The situation has stabilized, and the dumpster fire is out," Dietderich said earlier this month at a US bankruptcy court hearing in Delaware, adding that the company is starting to think about pushing forward with an effort to restart the bankrupt crypto exchange.
As reported, the effort to revive FTX has already drawn interest from Tribe Capital, a venture firm seeking to lead a $250 million fundraising campaign for the new platform.
The VC firm aims to spearhead a $250 million fund-raising campaign, anchored by $100 million from itself and its limited partners.
It is worth noting that, despite controlling tens of billions of dollars of assets across its various companies and operating in 250 jurisdictions, FTX Global “lacked fundamental financial and accounting controls,” according to a report by FTX debtors.
The report claimed there was an utter lack of controls related to the management of private keys and seed phrases in FTX, with the platform failing to “implement basic, widely accepted security controls to protect crypto assets."