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What is BALD? The Meme-Coin Rug Pull That Pumped 4 Million Percent Linked to Sam Bankman-Fried

Published August 1, 2023 4:45 PM
Omar Elorfaly
Published August 1, 2023 4:45 PM

Key Takeaways

  • A memecoin created to mock Coinbase’s CEO may have been a rug pull 
  • Sam Bankman-Fried’s Alameda finds itself in the middle of the controversy
  • Investors are calling for SEC regulation on memecoins

Coinbase, the biggest US-based exchange, is developing its portfolio beyond being assigned as a ‘surveillance partner’ for Wall Street behemoths entering the market. Among the biggest announcements is the introduction of $Base, the platform’s native token.

However, on Monday, The $Base blockchain witnessed a sudden liquidation that immediately raised the alarm among investors and stakeholders. 

BALD Rug Pull?

$BALD is a memecoin intended to mock Brian Armstrong’s appearance. Armstrong is the CEO of Coinbase, whose blockchain hosts $BALD. 

Over the weekend, the meme coin managed to attract the market, which helped Coinbase’s new layer-2 blockchain Base  attract around $68 million in Ether (ETH) and more than $200 million in trading volumes. As a result, investors rushed to buy BALD  which led the token’s market cap to reach $85 million.

Disaster struck the blockchain when a wallet liquidated over $20 million worth of BALD in one go. Needless to say, the market did not respond positively to the news, leading the token to drop in price by over 60%.

The story becomes more interesting as we learn that the wallet that liquidated the aforementioned tokens is linked to the deployer.

Is SBF BALD’s Deployer?

Igor Igamberdiev, Head of Research at Wintermute, an algorithmic digital assets trading firm, took the time to track down the wallet that dumped BALD tokens. 

Igamberdiev says BALD’s deployer “is definitely someone from Alameda.” Alameda is the company created by Sam Bankman-Fried, the CEO of FTX, the company that is the flagship of all crypto collapses. 

Alameda, headquartered in Hong Kong, was co-founded by SBF and Tara Mac Aulay in November 2022 and has since been at the center of the FTX scandal.

Igor managed to track down the wallet address and adjacent wallets used by the same trader. His findings led him to an old wallet that mainly used FTX and Alameda to move gigantic sums of crypto. 

However, Igor uses his findings to actually (potentially) acquit SBF from this rugpull, instead pointing fingers towards former Alameda co-CEO Samt Trabucco.

Investors Call For SEC Regulation

Following the events mentioned above, a user named @crypto4light shed light on the SEC’s lack of regulations. The user pointed out that the digital asset regulating body is failing to keep up with memecoin regulations, which he sees as the start of a chain of events that could lead to the collapse of the SEC’s favorite token, Bitcoin.


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