New FTX Head Says Crypto Exchange Could Be Revived: Wall St. Journal

The new head of FTX is exploring the possibility of restarting the bankrupt crypto exchange, according to an interview he gave to the Wall Street Journal, his first since taking over at FTX in November.

John J. Ray III, who previously handled Enron’s restructuring, said that despite the accusations of criminal misconduct by former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried and other executives, customers have lauded its technology and said it could be worth reviving the exchange.

“Everything is on the table,” Mr. Ray told the Journal. “If there is a path forward on that, then we will not only explore that, we’ll do it.”

The FTX token FTT was trading up 33% on Binance on the news.

The decision would come down to whether restarting FTX's international exchange would recover more for customers than just liquidating assets or selling the platform, Ray said.

In the interview, Ray also criticized Bankman-Fried's comments to the media and elsewhere as being unhelpful. Bankman-Fried has said FTX did not need to file for Chapter 11 and has been critical of Ray's decisions.

“We don’t need to be dialoguing with him,” Mr. Ray said. “He hasn’t told us anything that I don’t already know.”

In a text message to the Journal, Bankman-Fried responded that “This is a shocking and damning comment from someone pretending to care about customers.”

Read more: FTX Debtors Give Details on Digital Assets Identified So Far

UPDATE (Jan. 19, 16:24 UTC): Added additional detail.