Of late, there have been speculations that the founder of now-bankrupt crypto exchange FTX—Sam Bankman-Fried aka SBF—owns a stake in Twitter that’s worth about $100 million.
According to a recent report from Semafor, Twitter executive Elon Musk texted SBF in early May inviting him to roll over his public Twitter shares into a stake in the company. The report claimed,
“Bankman-Fried owns a sizable chunk of a now privately held and debt-laden Twitter. And Musk, who has publicly distanced himself from the crypto impresario since FTX failed earlier this month, now counts him as a financial partner in his effort to remake Twitter.“
Bankman-Fried’s philanthropic adviser, Will MacAskill, reportedly texted Musk on March 29— a week before the Tesla exec made his stake public—to suggest “a possible joint effort” between the two billionaires. He told Musk that it would “be easy” for Bankman-Fried to commit up to $3 billion to such a bid. In fact, Musk’s banker, Michael Grimes, later added that SBF was “in for $5 billion and possibly up to $10 billion.”
Bankman-Fried and Musk later spoke over the phone and the latter eventually opted not to invest. However, as Musk suggested, SBF contributed his $100 million in stock toward the now-private Twitter.
Citing Semafor‘s report, a host of publications reported that SBF owned a stake in Elon Musk’s Twitter. The Twitter executive, however, went on to clarify on Wednesday that the claims were “False.”
Musk also took a dig at Business Insider and said that it was still “not a real publication.” He further exclaimed, “Just give up.”
However, worth noting is that Semafor clearly mentioned in its report that the FTX balance sheet that was prepared after the takeover closed on October 28—and circulated to investors earlier this month—listed Twitter shares as an “illiquid” asset.
Rewinding a little into the past
Recently, Elon Musk acknowledged that Ex-FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried had offered billions of dollars to finance Twitter. The revelation came at a time when FTX faced an apparent hack that drained millions from the company’s wallets.
As news of the hack made its way on social media, Musk wasted no time calling out FTX and SBF. In a recent Twitter space, Musk revealed that his first impression of SBF was “this dude is bullshit.” He also stated that his “bullshit meter was redlining” after speaking to him for nearly 30 minutes. In fact, the Twitter executive also opined that he doubted that SBF had that money in the first place. He said,
“I was like, man, everyone including major investment banks, everyone was talking about him like he’s walking on water and has a zillion dollars. And that (was) not my impression, that dude is just – there’s something wrong. And he does not have capital, and he will not come through. That was my prediction.“