FTX Digital Markets chief recaps the Crypto Bahamas conference

Episode 42 of Season 4 of The Scoop was recorded remotely with The Block’s Frank Chaparro and Ryan Salame, Co-CEO of FTX Digital Markets

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The Bahamas has turned into an attractive destination for crypto companies looking to set up shop in a jurisdiction with a clear regulatory framework for digital assets — a movement spearheaded by crypto exchange FTX’s announcement to relocate its headquarters to the island nation late last year.

The Bahamas' emerging crypto scene was on full display during the last week of April, which saw approximately 2,000 industry leaders, public figures and celebrities, such as Bill Clinton and Tom Brady, converge for ‘Crypto Bahamas’ — a four day conference hosted by FTX and finance conference company SALT. 

In this episode of The Scoop, Ryan Salame, Co-CEO of FTX Digital Markets (FTX’s Bahamian subsidiary), explains why he believes the conference was “an incredible success,” and why he thinks the Bahamas is positioned to become a global hub for the crypto industry.

The conference helped to highlight the crypto-friendly nature of the Bahamas, as Salame explains during the interview,

“Some of my objectives were to show off the Bahamas as a jurisdiction, to show why we were there, allow the opportunity for companies to send people to see that this is a great place to do business. So that objective was easily hit.”

Salame told The Block’s Frank Chaparro that over 20 companies are in conversation with FTX about moving their headquarters to the Bahamas.

While the US has yet to solidify its regulatory approach to digital assets, clear legislation in the Bahamas removes the structural uncertainty.

As Salame explains, “All of crypto sits under one regulatory body, versus in the US, you're seeing the CFTC and SEC debate.”

Salame’s sentiment is shared by former CFTC chair Chris Giancarlo, who gave the regulatory structure for digital assets in the U.S. a “zero” on a scale of 1 to 10 during a panel at the conference.


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During this episode, Chaparro and Salame also discuss:

  • Improvements for next year’s conference
  • FTX’s new campus in the Bahamas
  • Carbon credits as digital assets

(Updated to correct name of regulatory agency in 8th paragraph). 

Disclaimer: Beginning in 2021, Michael McCaffrey, the former CEO and majority owner of The Block, took a series of loans from founder and former FTX and Alameda CEO Sam Bankman-Fried. McCaffrey resigned from the company in December 2022 after failing to disclose those transactions.

This episode is brought to you by our sponsors FireblocksCoinbase Prime & Cross River
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© 2023 The Block. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

About Authors

Davis Quinton is the Director of Podcasts at The Block and runs our flagship podcast called The Scoop, hosted by Frank Chaparro. Since joining The Block as an 'intern' in early 2022, he has worked closely with leaders across departments to translate The Block's written content into engaging multimedia formats. He holds a degree in Social Research & Public Policy from New York University in Abu Dhabi and is based in Sydney, Australia.
Frank Chaparro is the Editor At Large at The Block. Chaparro started his career at Business Insider, where he specialized in the intersection of digital assets and Wall Street, market structure, and financial technology. Soon after joining Business Insider out of Fordham University, Chaparro was interviewing top finance and tech executives, including billionaire Mark Cuban, “Flash Boys” star Brad Katsuyama, Cboe Global Markets CEO Ed Tilly, and New York Stock Exchange President Tom Farley. In 2018, he become a sought after reporter in the crypto world, interviewing luminaries such as Tyler Winklevoss, the cofounder of Gemini, Jeremy Allaire, the CEO of Circle, and Fundstrat head Tom Lee. He runs his own podcast The Scoop and writes a biweekly eponymous newsletter. He leads special projects, including The Block's flagship podcast, The Scoop. Prior to The Block, he held roles at Business Insider, NPR, and Nasdaq. For inquiries or tips, email [email protected].