Exclusive: Bankman-Fried’s FTX, parents bought Bahamas property worth $121 million

  • The FTX division bought 7 apartments in a high-end resort for “key personnel”.
  • Bankman-Fried’s parents name owners of $16.4 million vacation home
  • Bankman and Fried tell Reuters

NEW PROVIDENCE, Bahamas, Nov 22 (Reuters) – Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX, his parents and senior executives of the failed cryptocurrency exchange bought at least 19 properties in the Bahamas worth about $121 million over the past two years, real estate officials said. the data.

Most of FTX’s purchases have been luxury beachfront homes, including seven condominiums in an expensive resort community called Albany that cost nearly $72 million. The documents show that these properties bought by the FTX division were to be used as the company’s “key staff accommodation”. Reuters could not find out who lives in the apartments.

Documents for another beachfront home in Old Fort Bay, a gated community that was once a British colonial fort built in the 1700s to protect against pirates, identify Bankman-Fried’s parents as Stanford University law professors Joseph Bankman and Barbara. Fried as signatories. The property, according to one of the June 15 documents, is intended for use as a “vacation home.”

When asked by Reuters why the couple decided to buy a vacation home in the Bahamas and how it was paid for, whether with cash, a mortgage or a third party such as FTX, a spokeswoman for the professors said only that Bankman. and Freed sought to return the property to FTX.

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“Prior to bankruptcy proceedings, Mr. Bankman and Ms. Fried are seeking to return the deed to the company and are awaiting further instructions,” the spokeswoman said, declining to elaborate.

While FTX and its employees are known to have bought real estate in the Bahamas, where it set up its headquarters last September, property records seen by Reuters show for the first time the extent of their purchases and the intended use of some of the items. real estate.

FTX, which filed for bankruptcy earlier this month following a rush of customer withdrawals, did not respond to a request for comment. Bankman-Fried did not respond to requests for comment.

Bankman-Fried told Reuters she lived in the house with nine other partners. For his employees, he said FTX provided free meals and an “internal Uber-like” service on the island.

The collapse of FTX, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, has left nearly 1 million lenders facing billions of dollars in total losses. Reuters reported that Bankman-Fried secretly used $10 billion in customer funds to grow its trading business and that at least $1 billion of those deposits disappeared.

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In a filing earlier this month in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware, FTX’s new CEO John Ray said he understood FTX Group’s corporate funds were used “to purchase homes and other personal items for employees and consultants.”

Reuters was unable to determine the source of the funds that FTX and its executives used to purchase these properties.

PROPERTY PURCHASES

Reuters searched the property documents of FTX, Bankman-Fried, its parents and some of the company’s key executives at the Bahamas Registry Office.

FTX Property Holdings Ltd, an FTX unit, has bought 15 properties worth about $100 million in 2021 and 2022.

His most expensive purchase was a $30 million penthouse in Albany, a resort where Tiger Woods holds an annual golf tournament. The penthouse’s ownership records, dated March 17, were signed by FTX Property president Ryan Salamen and showed it was intended as a “primary staff residence.”

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Salame did not respond to a request for comment.

Other high-end real estate purchases include three condominiums at One Cable Beach, a beachfront residence in New Providence. Records showed the condominiums range in price from $950,000 to $2 million and were purchased by Nishad Singh, FTX’s former head of engineering, FTX co-founder Gary Wang and Bankman-Fried for residential use.

Singh and Wang did not respond to requests for comment.

Two properties owned by FTX Property have been marked for commercial use: the $8.55 million cluster of homes that served as FTX’s headquarters, and a 4.95-acre waterfront lot overlooking the cyan waters that also was intended to be converted into office space. crypto exchange.

The FTX headquarters is now unoccupied, with furniture stuck to the windows. His sign has been removed. The land, which cost 4.5 million dollars, is also empty.

A security official said the employees have not returned to headquarters since leaving earlier this month.

Reporting by Koh Gui Qing; editing by Paritosh Bansal and Claudia Parsons

Our standards. Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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