Elon Musk denied a report claiming that disgraced FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried owns a $100 million stake in Twitter.
Musk early Wednesday morning replied to a Business Insider tweet that shared a story about Sam Bankman-Fried reportedly owning the stake in Musk’s Twitter.
"False. Also, Business is still not a real publication. Just give up," Musk tweeted.
Semafor reported Tuesday that soon after securing a deal to buy Twitter for $44 billion, Musk texted Bankman-Fried on May 5 and invited him to roll a $100 million stake he owned into a privately held Twitter.
An FTX balance sheet circulated to investors earlier this month lists the Twitter shares as an "illiquid" asset, Semafor reported.
Bankman-Fried had messaged Musk before the text to express support for the Tesla and SpaceX CEO's plans for Twitter. The FTX founder said he wouldn't be able to invest new money in the social media platform, Semafor reported.
Bankman-Fried added that he had about $100 million in stock he could roll over into the deal, the publication said.
Semafor said Bankman-Fried had started accumulating the stake early this year with an eye toward acquiring Twitter himself.
Later Wednesday, Musk questioned Semafor’s reporting.
"Semafor is owned by SBF [Bankman-Fried]. This is a massive conflict of interest in your reporting. Journalistic integrity is [wastebasket emjoi]," Musk tweeted.
On Nov 12, Musk joined a Twitter Space with more than 60,000 listeners to discuss FTX and Bankman-Fried.
"To be honest, I'd never heard of him," Musk, per CoinDesk. "But then I got a ton of people telling me he's got, you know, huge amounts of money that he wants to invest in the Twitter deal. And I talked to him for about half an hour. And I know my bullsh*t meter was redlining. It was like, 'This dude is bullsh*t' – that was my impression."
During a court appearance last week, Musk said that organizations such as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have been far more willing to investigate him than FTX, Teslarati reported.
FTX announced Nov. 11 that it would initiate bankruptcy proceedings in the U.S. while Bankman-Fried resigned.
The cryptocurrency exchange owes its 50 biggest creditors nearly $3.1 billion, and owes about $1.45 billion to its top ten creditors, according to a court filing on Saturday.
Reuters contributed to this story.
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