FTX has invested significant sums in high-profile personalities such as Shaquille O’Neal, Naomi Osaka, and others, and it’s now on a quest to recoup those millions.
FTX is currently delving into the possibility of reclaiming the substantial financial endorsements it extended to celebrity athletes and sports organizations who promoted the cryptocurrency exchange prior to its bankruptcy filing in November of last year. In a comprehensive court filing spanning over 180 pages, submitted on August 31, FTX’s financial consultants meticulously documented a list of prominent individuals and businesses who received payments as part of their marketing initiatives. This examination seeks to determine if these payments fall within the parameters that permit insolvent companies to reverse such transactions.
This extensive roster includes a payment of $750,000 to former basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal, over $300,000 to tennis sensation Naomi Osaka, in excess of $270,000 to former baseball star David Ortiz, and more than $200,000 to American football quarterback Trevor Lawrence. Additionally, the list encompasses payments of nearly $420,000 to the basketball powerhouse, the Golden State Warriors, and upwards of $250,000 to the Miami Heat.
However, it’s important to note that the filing cautions that the final amount FTX manages to recover from these efforts “may vary significantly from the reported figures.”
It’s worth mentioning that several of the celebrities mentioned in FTX’s recent filing have been confronted with class-action lawsuits initiated by FTX users seeking compensation. O’Neal, Osaka, and the Golden State Warriors have all been targeted by groups of FTX customers who allege that they promoted the exchange, which they claim was involved in the sale of unregistered securities.
The exchange has initiated a series of legal actions in an attempt to reclaim funds, with the most recent lawsuit filed on September 9 against cross-chain protocol LayerZero Labs, aiming to recover $21 million that FTX alleges was wrongfully withdrawn prior to the exchange’s bankruptcy in November of the previous year. In July, FTX filed lawsuits against co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried and other former top executives in an effort to recover over $1 billion in funds they are accused of misappropriating.