Sam Bankman-Fried, founder and former CEO of FTX – the now bankrupt crypto exchange, has committed to testifying in front of the House Committee on Financial Services to discuss the collapse of FTX and affiliated entities. The agreement to testify came today following a back and forth discussion via Twitter that involved the current Chair of the Committee, Maxine Waters.
Presently, the new CEO of FTX John J. Ray, III, is on the list to testify. If both former and current CEOs show up this may make for an interesting operational perspective on FTX.
Bankman-Fried expressed his opinion that he may not be able to provide as much information as the Committee may desire, stating:
“I still do not have access to much of my data — professional or personal. So there is a limit to what I will be able to say, and I won’t be as helpful as I’d like.”
He added that he would be able to discuss the following:
“I will try to be helpful during the hearing, and to shed what light I can on: —
FTX US’s solvency and American customers —
Pathways that could return value to users internationally —
What I think led to the crash –My own failings”
Bankman Fried said he had thought of himself as a “model CEO” before the FTX debacle, adding that he hopes people can learn from who he was and who he could have been.
The hearing arrives at a time when US regulators are investigating the failure of FTX and the loss of customer funds. Expectations are for enforcement actions to be filed in the coming days or weeks. At the same time, it has been widely reported that the US Department of Justice, Southern District of New York, is investigating potential criminal charges. At the same time, foreign regulators are also queuing up, including Bahamian regulators, as the jurisdiction where multiple FTX entities were regulated.
The hearing, scheduled for December 13th, will be broadly watched worldwide. Many view FTX as a tipping point regarding the oversight of crypto exchanges that largely operated outside of traditional securities law.
The hearing will be live-streamed on the House Committee on Financial Services website.