- Former FTX executives have founded Trek Labs in Dubai to create a secure cryptocurrency exchange, Backpack Exchange.
- The new crypto exchange emphasizes customer fund security, utilizing multiparty computation techniques.
- Trek Labs is led by ex-FTX lawyer Can Sun, who played a significant role in the aftermath of FTX's collapse.
A new chapter in the cryptocurrency narrative unfolds as former FTX executives join hands to launch Trek Labs, a Dubai-based crypto exchange.
The venture, which comes 12 months after the infamous collapse of FTX, aims to rectify a key issue that led to FTX's downfall: safeguarding customer funds. Can Sun, previously a lawyer at FTX, leads the initiative.
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Trek Labs will offer crypto-related services under the name Backpack Exchange. The new company has already been licensed to provide crypto services in the region.
Armani Ferrante, another ex-FTX employee, is now the CEO of Trek Labs and the brain behind Backpack. This crypto wallet is a crucial component of the Backpack Exchange ecosystem.
Joining them is Claire Zhang, who served as Sun's deputy in legal affairs at FTX and is Ferrante's spouse. Zhang is part of the executive team at Trek but plans to transition out after the upcoming investment round.
The core ethos behind Trek Labs is to apply the hard-learned lessons from FTX's implosion to ensure robust protection of customer funds. The Backpack technology incorporates a multiparty computation (MPC) technique, necessitating multiple parties' approval for fund transfers, thereby enhancing security. Customers will also be able to verify their funds at their convenience.
Reflecting on the need for a transparent and trustworthy platform in the crypto industry, Sun remarked to The Wall Street Journal:
In a post-FTX world, you need trust and transparency to create a true alternative to the other players.
Currently in beta, the wider launch of Backpack Exchange is anticipated later this month.
Sun's insights into the FTX debacle were further highlighted during his testimony at Sam Bankman-Fried's fraud trial, where he revealed his resignation from FTX after learning about the misuse of customer funds. This misuse led to a significant loss of customer assets, with around $9 billion unaccounted for, highlighting the need for the stringent security measures Trek Labs aims to implement.