Sam Bankman-Fried speaks at a Dealbook event and says he “did not knowingly commingle funds.”

On November 30, 2022, former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) discussed FTX’s collapse at the New York Times Dealbook Summit with Andrew Ross Sorkin, in his first live interview since the cryptocurrency exchange’s collapse. SBF told the Dealbook Summit host that he was “deeply sorry about what happened” and stressed that he “did not knowingly mix up the funds.”

NYT Dealbook Summit host Andrew Ross Sorkin interviews Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of FTX will appear on Good Morning America.

FTX co-founder and former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) sat down for a long interview with Andrew Ross Sorkin the host of the New York Times (NYT) Dealbook Summit. SBF’s appearance in the Dealbook followed SBF’s interview published the day before with crypto supporter and journalist Tiffany Fong. Appearing virtually at the NYT conference, SBF was asked whether or not he feared criminal charges would be brought against him.

There is a time and a place for me to think about myself and my own future“, SBF said told the event organizer NYT Dealbook. “I don’t think that’s it“. The former FTX CEO explained that he was still in the Bahamas and that returning to the United States had crossed his mind. “I’ve been thinking about coming back to the U.S.“, said the former FTX executive.

Regarding his fortune, SBF declared that there were no hidden funds, that he had only “almost nothing” and that he had only one credit card left. Ross Sorkin asked when SBF realized things were bad and SBF said it was November 6 and that at that time “we were gathering all the information.

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Former FTX boss speaks at a Dealbook event, says he did not knowingly commingle funds.
“Look, I had a bad month,” SBF stressed. “I can’t speak for anyone else … For me, I don’t know, like, I was prescribed various things at different times to help with focus.”

With respect to Alameda Research, SBF appeared to deflect responsibility for his role by insisting that he “did not know the size of their position.” “I was not running Alameda“, SBF said while fidgeting in his chair. “I didn’t know exactly what was going on“. In the interview, SBF told Sorkin that he thought it was possible that FTX customers could get their money back and cited how Bitfinex made customers whole after the exchange was hacked in 2016.

I obviously wish I spent more time dwelling on the bad and less time thinking about the good“, SBF said. The FTX co-founder also noted that he “did not knowingly commingle funds” and that he does not recall a time when he told a lie. SBF stated:

I have been as truthful as I am capable of being – I don’t remember any time when I lied.

Ross Sorkin asked SBF whether or not the company had formal board structures and SBF responded that there were too many boards across the FTX empire. While FTX had a large number of board members, SBF told Dealbook participants that it had “completely failed” in risk management. “There was no one in charge of positional risk at FTX“, SBF admitted. The NYT reporter also asked SBF what he thought about the idea that the FTX empire was simply “a bunch of kids on Adderall having a sleepover.” SBF responded:

Look, I screwed up. We made a big mistake.

SBF also claimed that his parents and upbringing had nothing to do with the collapse of FTX. When asked what he told his parents about the situation, SBF said, “Hey guys, I think there might be a problem … It looks like the Alameda position might implode here“. SBF addressed the issue of his political contributions and stated that “my donations were primarily for pandemic prevention.“Bankman-Fried’s brother ran the left-wing advocacy group Guarding Against Pandemics. “This was the main thing I was supporting with these contributions“, SBF told summit host Dealbook.

During his video call, SBF believed that all U.S. FTX customers would be reimbursed, but did not really explain how this was the case. He noted that he was “confused“as to why U.S. FTX customers were not allowed to make withdrawals. “Whatever happened, why it happened, I had a duty to our stakeholders, our customers, our investors, the regulators around the world, to get it right for them“, SBF noted to Sorkin. “Clearly, I have not done a good job of that. I have never tried to defraud anyone.

In addition to the NYT Dealbook video appearance with Sorkin, Bankman-Fried also addressed the topic with Good Morning America, and the show will air on December 1, 2022. In a video clip posted on by GMA, SBF tells host George Stephanopoulos “I spent no time or effort trying to manage the risk.

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