The implosion of Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX empire dealt a harsh blow to the Bahamas’ ambitions to be a hub for the crypto industry, and it’s causing massive pain for locals who treated the now-bankrupt exchange like a bank.
Stephane Ouellette, chief executive of Toronto-based crypto firm FRNT Financial, traveled to the Bahamas to assess the fallout from the collapse. He joined the What Goes Up podcast to discuss the bankruptcy’s effect on the island nation it called home, as well as the impact the scandal is having on his business and the entire market.
“FTX was positioning [itself] as a banking alternative, particularly in regions where they operated—like the Bahamas,” Ouellette said. “So there’s even more horror stories of people treating FTX like bank-like infrastructure, and therefore leaving a significant amount of their assets just latent on FTX. Now they can’t get access to them, just like everybody else.”