- Sam Bankman-Fried was resentful, insecure and unable to handle conflict, according to the former FTX US executive.
- Brett Harrison said he reported his concerns about FTX to the disgraced former crypto billionaire.
- Bankman-Fried “at times responded with gaslighting and manipulation,” Harrison added.
Sam Bankman-Fried was a resentful and insecure manager who reacted badly to any conflict or criticism, according to a former senior executive at FTX’s US operation.
Brett Harrison, who was the chairman of FTX US between May 2021 and September 2022, slammed the disgraced former crypto billionaire in a series of tweets Saturday.
Harrison said his relationship with Bankman-Fried began to sour after about six months – when he called for greater separation between FTX US and its Bahamas-based parent company.
“I began to advocate strongly for establishing separation and independence for the executive, legal, and development teams at FTX US, and Sam disagreed,” he said. “I saw in this first conflict his utter insecurity and his intransigence when his decisions were questioned, his viciousness and the volatility of his temper.”
“I realized he wasn’t who I remembered,” Harrison added, referring to a previous stint with Bankman-Fried at quantitative trading firm Jane Street.
Bankman-Fried had been called “the next warren buffettby Fortune magazine and courted top investors like Venture capital firm Sequoia Capital and NFL star Tom Brady — and that made him hard to challenge, according to Harrison.
“There was tremendous pressure not to disagree with Sam, but I did it anyway,” he said. “At that time, and throughout my time at FTX US, his influence on the media, FTX partners, the venture capital industry and the traditional financial industry was pervasive and unyielding.”
Harrison said he flagged other concerns about FTX’s hiring policy, its lack of experienced managers in executive positions, and the software development roles held by Gary Wang and Nishad Singh – which have since been identified as key members of Bankman-Fried’s “inner circle”.
But Bankman-Fried was unable to handle the conflict and responded to criticism by “gas lightingsaid Harrison, the former US executive at FTX.
“Sam wasn’t comfortable with conflict,” Harrison tweeted. “He responded sometimes with unregulated hostility, sometimes with gaslighting and manipulation, but ultimately chose to isolate me from communicating about key decision-making.”
Harrison added that when he first put his concerns in writing in April 2021, Bankman-Fried allies at FTX said they would destroy his professional reputation unless he apologized and stepped down. his complaint.
“I filed a formal complaint in writing regarding what I considered to be the biggest organizational issues hampering the future success of FTX. I wrote that I would resign if the issues were not resolved,” he said. declared.
“In response, I was threatened on Sam’s behalf that I would be fired and that Sam would destroy my professional reputation,” Harrison added. “I was asked to officially retract what I wrote and issue an apology to Sam that was written for me.”
Harrison resigned from his role at FTX in September – just two months before filing for bankruptcy.
Bankman-Fried was arrested in the Bahamas and extradited to the United States in December. Prosecutors say FTX’s track record shows he “orchestrated a year-long fraud to conceal from FTX investorsthat he funneled client funds to his crypto trading firm Alameda Research.
There is no indication that Harrison is suspected of wrongdoing. Neither Bankman-Fried nor Harrison immediately responded to Insider’s requests for comment.