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The Origins of the Bank Man

The Origins of the Bank Man
Photo by Miquel Parera / Unsplash

Sam Bankman-Fried also known as SBF is one the richest people in crypto. He is the founder of Alameda Research, a quant trading firm, and FTX, a cryptocurrency exchange.

His net worth is estimated to be around 20 billion dollars but how did he get started?

For starters, the Bankman is 30 years old and got started in the world of finance at Jane Street Capital at the age of 21 as an intern. He later worked there full-time until 2017 when he started working at an Effective Altruism non-profit as director of development.

He quit towards the end of 2017 and founded Alameda Research (our favourite counter party on-chain) and did an arbitrage trade that earned him tens of millions or hundreds of millions in profit. How?

He was moving around 25 million dollars a day to capture the premium of Bitcoin in Japan (10 - 15%) compared to the US.

While the arbitrage was well known, it was hard to move around size in the exchanges to capture the premium. He had to find innovative ways to moving money around, converting dollars to yen and vice versa and had to explain to banks and lawyers in Japan and the US of the whole operation in order to successfully capture the trade at that size without getting suspected and charged for anything illegal.

According to various random numbers thrown around in interviews, the Bankman was making at least 2 million a day through this arbitrage but the trade was pretty short lived as the arbitrage died down in early 2018.

So that's how the Bankman first made his money. Now Alameda buys liquidations, sells solana shitcoins at a 500x from their seed rounds and takes our money.