Caroline Ellison Net Worth: Former Alameda Research CEO Pleads Guilty to Fraud!!

Alameda Research’s chief executive officer is Caroline Ellison. Prior to joining Alameda in 2018, Caroline was a trader on the stock desk at Jane Street. The recent decline in the cryptocurrency market has put Ellison in the limelight.

The leaked balance sheet suggests a connection between the Alameda Research and FTX markets. In the wake of FTX’s seeming triumph and sudden downfall, the once-mysterious Caroline Ellison has emerged as a central character.

What is Caroline Ellison’s Net Worth?

As of September 2023, Business executive Caroline Ellison has a $20 million net worth. As the former CEO of bitcoin trading firm Alameda Research, Caroline Ellison amassed a fortune and a measure of notoriety. Disgraced businessman Sam Bankman-Fried helped create Alameda.

After Alameda and more than a hundred other cryptocurrency-related businesses, most notably Bankman-Fried’s cryptocurrency exchange FTX, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in late 2022, leading to Caroline’s dismissal. As a result of the incident, FTX’s market capitalization plummeted from $30 billion to nothing.

It has been claimed that FTX sent $10 billion in customer funds to Alameda to cover a massive trading loss sustained by the hedge fund. She was charged with seven crimes, including wire fraud and money laundering, and pled guilty in 2022.

Caroline allegedly moved $22.5 million from Alameda to a personal account in the months leading up to the bankruptcy of both Alameda and FTX. She defined an individual $10,000,000 wire payment as a “bonus.” Ellison is well-known in her field, but she is also an outspoken polyamorist who purportedly dated Bankman-Fried.

Early  Life

Caroline Ellison is a 20-year-old Caucasian Christian Bahamian who was born in the Caribbean on September 20. Her father, Glenn Ellison, is a professor and the head of the economics division at MIT.

Formerly, he had a direct line to the current head of the SEC, Gary Gensler. His mom, Sara Fisher Ellison, is a senior lecturer in economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 2008, she enrolled at Newton North, and by 2012, she had graduated.

The arithmetic skills of Newton North High School senior Ellison were particularly impressive. She started at Stanford in 2012, finishing with a BS in mathematics the following year. After Ellison finished college, she immediately dove into the workforce.

Alameda Research

Sam had left Jane Street, but he and Ellison remained in regular contact due to their common “effective altruism.” According to the principles of effective altruism, one should pursue material prosperity with the intention of giving all of it away to charity. Following his departure from the trading firm in November 2017, Bankman-Fried founded Alameda Research in Berkeley, California with the help of Tara Mac Aulay.

Quantitative trading was the company’s main focus. SBF explained in an interview that they placed “research” in their name to entice potential clients. In his contribution, he demonstrated why investors should consider putting their money into a trading firm that places a premium on research.

In January of 2018, Bankman-Fried engaged in an arbitrage trade via Alameda Research. Back then, Bitcoin was more valuable in Japan than it was in the US. Therefore, he used the disparity to his advantage and made $40,000,000.

But in February of 2018, while Ellison was in the San Francisco Bay Area, he and Sam talked about the prospect of Ellison joining Alameda Research. Back then, the firm’s main focus was on bitcoin hedge funds. Ellison accepted Alameda’s offer without hesitation and returned to work for the company in March 2018.

The company’s crypto arbitrage trading policy and the prospect of increasing her income so that she might donate more of it intrigued her. Because of her close friendship with Sam, she was promoted to co-CEO of the company. Trabucco eventually resigned, leaving her as the sole CEO.

In the meantime, Alameda Research relocated its headquarters from California to Hong Kong at the beginning of 2019. Throughout the course of the year, the firm made significant contributions to the launch of the afterwards defunct FTX. The company served as the market maker for the platform. This function was critical in helping FTX establish itself in the bitcoin market.

Users may always come to Alameda Research, the market maker, to buy or sell their Bitcoin. The crypto hedge fund will sometimes take the losing side of a trade in an effort to entice people to use FTX. The number of people using the exchange increased dramatically as a result of this tactic. Before its collapse, FTX had been the second-largest bitcoin exchange.

After FTX was established, SBF shifted Alameda Research’s trading priorities, a move that didn’t sit well with Ellison. The market shifted from relying on arbitrage to making speculative trades. As of the start of the year 2020, the focus shift had an effect on the trade. However, because to the many investments that Alameda Research made over the year, Ellison and SBF became the buzz of the crypto industry. Heavy investment in a number of early-stage crypto businesses propelled the company to the forefront of the industry.

Ellison and SBF gave money to several political organizations through Alameda Research. SBF was a major political donor in the United States during the 2020 presidential election. About $5 million of his fortune went to the liberal PAC Future Forward USA, which backs Vice President Joe Biden. Later, SBF gave $5 million through Alameda Research to SBF’s brother Gabe’s PAC, Guarding Against Pandemics.

When FTX introduced its native token, FTT, in 2020, Alameda Research bought a sizable chunk of it. The investment group reportedly spent over $60 million on the cryptocurrency.

The corporation also used borrowed funds to invest in over 150 other businesses, including Genesis and Voyager. The subsequent $650 million acquisition by SBF of a 7.6% share in Robinhood was funded by Alameda Research. In August of 2021, SBF had acquired over 91% of Alameda Research’s stock.

During the height of Alameda Research’s popularity, Caroline was named to the prestigious “Forbes 30 under 30 list.” She was only 27 years old at the time. According to Forbes, under Ellison’s leadership, Alameda Research was generating daily revenues of $4 million.

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Involvement in the Collapse of the FTX-Alameda

Ellison played a major role in the demise of FTX and Alameda Research. As the company’s co-CEO from 2021 to 2022, she green-lit a number of loans for SBF as he sought “crypto-savior” status. Ellison was reportedly aware of the enormous hole in the exchange’s balance sheet before the bankruptcy of FTX and Alameda Research.

According to multiple sources, Gary Wang, the self-proclaimed Chief Technology Officer of FTX, developed a code base to transfer consumers’ funds from the cryptocurrency exchange to Alameda Research. Ellison, as CEO, was responsible for overseeing the influx, but he and other FTX executives, including SBF, botched the process. Between May and June of 2022, Alameda Research suffered a major loss.

The former CEO disclosed her knowledge of the flaws eight months prior to the business’s demise in a court document. Despite being aware of the problems, Ellison did not do much to fix them. Instead, she gave herself a secret multimillion-dollar bonus. Through a series of exchanges, she amassed this cash.

Ellison first transferred $22.5 million in funds from Alameda Research to her own FTX account via a series of transactions. She deposited around $10 million into her account and promptly placed it in a mysterious artificial intelligence (AI) safety research firm. In addition, a bankruptcy petition by FTX showed that the cryptocurrency exchange owed Ellison $6 million.

Early in the month of November 2022, it was discovered that a sizable sum of user cash had been stolen. Then it was reported that Alameda Research had an accounting gap, revealing that it had used FTT worth $3.66 million to secure a loan. Some of Alameda Research’s high-risk investments were reportedly financed by customer deposits, as was previously reported. Investors, fearing a market collapse, fled the cryptocurrency exchange in droves after hearing the news. As a result, on 11 November 2022, FTX submitted a Chapter 11 petition.

Lawsuit and Controversy

Both the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed legal complaints against Ellison after the failure of FTX and Alameda Research. The SEC claimed that the former CEO of Alameda was involved in a plan to defraud FTX investors that spanned several years.

The SEC also claimed that Ellison had artificially inflated the cost of FTT. According to the lawsuit, Ellison manipulated the price of FTT between 2019 and 2022 at SBF’s behest. To trade FTT at predetermined prices, Ellison and Alameda Research developed automated bots, as detailed by the SEC.

Similarly, the authority claimed that Alameda Research, while Ellison was at the helm, manipulated bot trading parameters to prop up the price of FTT. According to the SEC, Ellison and Alameda used these methods to hide the company’s true risk so that it could qualify for larger loans.

Ellison, on the other hand, was accused of fraud and misrepresenting information by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) in connection with the sale of virtual asset commodities.

Ellison agreed to the CFTC indictment in December 2022. Federal charges were resolved with the guilty plea of former Alameda Research CEO Damian Williams, according to the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York. The lawyer further explained that Ellison entered a guilty plea on two charges of wire fraud. Additionally, she pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

Ellison was facing up to 110 years in jail before she entered her guilty plea. Given her cooperation with authorities, however, a sentence of that length now seems unlikely. Ellison made a reparation payment agreement with the prosecution and pled guilty. She is also ready to provide testimony in court if necessary.


The revelation of Alameda Research’s role in the FTX catastrophe derailed Caroline Ellison’s rise from a promising economics student to the company’s chief executive officer. The ramifications of this financial catastrophe are still being worked out as court battles drag on and the Bitcoin community maintains a state of heightened vigilance.

The data presented here is based on publicly available sources and is not meant to replace professional guidance in any way. The situation involving Caroline Ellison and Alameda Research is complicated and ongoing, therefore before making any financial decisions or forming opinions on the matter, readers are urged to do their own research and consult with professionals.

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