The FTX collapse is a setback for the industry as a whole: Alex Tapscott
As FTX Trading Ltd. was filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. on Friday, investors were still reviewing the company’s private financial documents.
Those reviews follow a frenzied week of discussions between the company’s founder – and now former chief executive officer – Sam Bankman-Fried and potential investors in an attempt to save the cryptocurrency exchange business.
“FTX is raising roughly $6-10 billion of liquidity this week. We are very open to structures here, and can be flexible,” one of the documents from an online data room reads.
FTX’s Chapter 11 filing said that approximately 130 affiliated companies have commenced voluntary proceedings. But the crisis has ensnared many others outside its immediate circle such as lender BlockFi, a troubled digital-asset lender once worth US$3 billion but which has now limited activity on its platform. The company paused client withdrawals late Thursday, citing “a lack of clarity” over the status of FTX US as well as the uncertainty afflicting FTX.com and sister trading house Alameda Research.
According to multiple sources who were in direct contact with Bankman-Fried in the past 24 hours, an inside look at FTX’s financial picture left them surprised, considering the once high flying cryptocurrency trading platform had been valued at US$25 billion last year.
“This data room was put together quickly,” said one source who had engaged with FTX in the past day. “There were some huge demands put on Sam. He is under extreme stress.”
Some of that can be seen in the documents, which were obtained by BNN Bloomberg through multiple sources.
“These are rough values, and could be slightly off,” one statement reads, in regards to the company’s balance sheet. “There is also obviously a chance of typos, etc,” the Microsoft Excel spreadsheet authored by Bankman-Fried goes on to say.
The Excel document also includes another mea culpa from Bankman-Fried following an itemized breakdown of FTX’s financial assets and cryptocurrency holdings that show the company has nearly US$9 billion in liabilities and about US$900 million in liquid assets on its balance sheet.
“There were many things I wish I could do differently than I did, but the largest are represented by these two things: the poorly labeled internal bank-related acount (sic), and the size of customer withdrawals during a run on the bank,” according to the document.