Sam Bankman Fried woke up on Monday still a billionaire, even as his cryptocurrency empire began to crumble. On Friday, his fortune was completely wiped out.
Based on Bloomberg’s net worth calculations, Bankman-Fried was worth around $16 billion at the start of the week. But when his crypto exchange, FTX, crashed, the value of his assets was reduced to zero in what Bloomberg called “one of the greatest wealth destructions in history.”
FTX announced on Friday that it had filed for bankruptcy and Bankman-Fried, known as SBF, resigned as chief executive.
The 30-year-old entrepreneur’s net worth, which was largely tied to digital assets, peaked at around $26 billion this spring. Over the summer, as crypto prices plummeted, Bankman-Fried became a white knight in the industry, using its FTX exchange and sister hedge fund Alameda to secure lines of credit for crypto firms. like BlockFi and Voyager that were in danger of collapsing.
He said Reuters in July that he and FTX still had “a few billion” left to shore up other businesses and help stabilize the industry.
Bankman-Fried owns about 70% of FTX’s US business, which the index now believes is essentially worthless. His stake in online brokerage Robinhood, previously valued at more than $500 million, was removed from Bloomberg’s calculation after reports indicated the stake was held through Alameda and could have been used as a collateral for loans.
A follower of “effective altruism,” Bankman-Fried sought to earn as much money as possible in order to give it away. But the fate of his philanthropic endeavors is now uncertain.
On Thursday, the entire staff of the FTX Future Fund, which claims to have committed $160 million in grants, publicly resigned. In a statement, the five-person team wrote that they “have fundamental questions about the legitimacy and integrity of the business operations that funded the FTX Foundation and the Future Fund”.