Ikigai Fund Caught Up in FTX Contagion

The company tweeted on Monday that it attempted to withdraw funds from FTX — very little could be retrieved


Travis Kling, founder of Ikigai, at the Blockworks Digital Asset Summit in New York, September 2021: Photo: Mike Lawrence for Blockworks


Travis Kling, the founder and chief investment officer of Ikigai, revealed that the cryptocurrency asset management firm has been caught up in the FTX collapse.

A large majority of the hedge fund’s assets had been on FTX, according to Kling. After the news of the centralized exchanges’ collapse, the company went to withdraw money, only to find it could retrieve very little.

“It was entirely my fault and not anyone else’s. I lost my investors’ money after they put faith in me to manage risk and I am truly sorry for that. I have publicly endorsed FTX many times and I am truly sorry for that. I was wrong,” Kling tweeted.

Kling said that in the short term, Ikigai would continue to trade assets which are not on FTX.

Ikigai previously raised $30 million from existing investors to launch a venture fund which was not affected by FTX’s collapse, according to Kling. It is currently in the process of deciding the next steps for this fund.

The company does not know what the timeline and potential recovery of funds will be. Ikigai is still in the process of deciding whether or not to continue running the firm and or begin winding down operations.

Kling expressed his disappointment in the industry and the scope of events which unfolded last week on Twitter, noting that it is “hard for me to imagine the space bouncing back quickly from this ordeal.”

“I just don’t have it in me at the moment. I’m pretty disgusted with the space as a whole and kinda humanity in general,” Kling tweeted.

Kling believes that for crypto to recover from the events that transpired, much more needs to be done to expel bad actors and remodel the concept of trust. 

“We’re letting way too many sociopaths get way too powerful and then we all pay the price. If Ikigai continues on, we pledge to fight harder in this regard. It’s a fight worth fighting,” he said.

Many industry participants have shown their support to the Ikigai team, with co-founder and CEO at ChintaiNetwork David Packham tweeting that, “Your only real mistake was trusting a firm backed by huge funds and regulated in a region was not a fundamental dishonest bad actor committing mass fraud.”

Ikigai declined Blockworks request for comment.

Start your day with top crypto insights from David Canellis and Katherine Ross. Subscribe to the Empire newsletter.


Upcoming Events

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research

Screen Shot 2024-05-16 at 14.53.45.png


Loss-versus-rebalancing (LVR) is arguably Ethereum DeFi’s biggest problem, and thus reducing LVR is fundamental to the success of Ethereum. This report dives into the world of LVR. We uncover its importance for AMM designers, discuss the two major mechanism design categories and various projects developing solutions, and offer a higher level perspective on the importance of AMMs in general.


Yesterday saw Congress’ upper chamber side with the House on a measure aimed at overturning SAB 121


Oklahoma’s new crypto bill will go into effect in November of this year


The deposits hit a $20 million cap in just 45 minutes


Twelve Democratic Senators voted in favor to pass the resolution Thursday


Pump.fun is “aware” that bonding curve contracts on Pump.fun were exploited, and has since paused trading


Some investment pros are mulling crypto allocations between 1% and 10% and seeking ex-BTC exposure for interested clients