Collapse of FTX deprives academics of grants, stokes fears of forced repayment
The collapse of crypto exchange FTX and its grant-making body, the FTX Future Fund, has left some researchers at top universities without the funds they were promised and others trying to repay grants before they could be ordered to.
Launched in February 2022, the FTX Future Fund was part of the FTX Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Sam Bankman-Fried’s crypto empire which fell apart last year, in what U.S. prosecutors called an “epic” fraud.
Federal prosecutors in Manhattan have accused the FTX founder of stealing billions of dollars in customer funds to plug losses at his hedge fund, Alameda Research. He denies wrongdoing.
On Nov. 11, 2022 – the same day that FTX filed for bankruptcy – the team behind the fund announced via a blog post on an altruism forum that they had resigned and would be unlikely to honour their commitments to those awarded grants.
“We deeply regret the difficult, painful, and stressful position that many of you are now in,” the post by Nick Beckstead, Leopold Aschenbrenner, Avital Balwit, Ketan Ramakrishnan and William MacAskill said.
Beckstead, Aschenbrenner, Ramakrishnan and MacAskill did not respond to multiple attempts to contact them via LinkedIn, Twitter and email for this article. Balwit declined to comment.
Representatives for FTX also declined to comment and declined to say whether the FTX Foundation is included in the bankruptcy proceedings.
This report’s information was first seen on REUTERS; to read more, click this link.