FTX filing reveals payments to Shaq, Naomi Osaka, David Ortiz, and more

Quick Take

  • A filing has revealed the names and numbers behind some of FTX’s marketing and sponsorship payments
  • The list features celebrity athletes and sports organizations alongside a wide range of other individuals and corporations

A recent court filing from the current management of FTX has revealed the details behind some of the company’s marketing and sponsorship deals under its former CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried. 

The document, which was filed August 31, lists millions of dollars in payments to celebrity athletes Shaquille O’Neal, Naomi Osaka, David Ortiz, and Trevor Lawrence alongside organizations such as the MLB and the NBA’s Miami Heat and Golden State Warriors franchises. Also listed: Coachella, Gamestop, Kevin O’Leary, and several LLCs which couldn’t be traced back to known individuals. 

According to the filing, the payments represent “certain prepayments related to various advertising and sponsorship agreements, security deposits, retainers and other miscellaneous deposits and prepayments.” However, the authors acknowledge that the data “may not reflect an exhaustive list of all deposits and prepayments.”

FTX under Bankman-Fried was known for its wide-ranging marketing efforts, including purchasing the naming rights to the Miami Heat’s stadium for a reported $135 million, hiring comedian Larry David for a Super Bowl ad, and frequently featuring investor Tom Brady in other ads. 

FTX may attempt to claw back payments

The filing acknowledged that it’s unclear how much, if anything, the FTX estate will be able to claw back from the prepayments listed in the filing, noting the recovered amount “...may vary materially from the amounts reported herein.” 

FTX has attempted to claw back funds from a variety of sources, including $700 million from K5 Global, a venture capital firm whose founder allegedly helped connect Bankman-Fried with elite individuals. The FTX estate has also gone after funds held by Bankman-Fried and the other top FTX executives directly, philanthropic organizations connected to FTX, and companies purchased by FTX before the collapse. 

Bankman-Fried is set to be tried in court on October 3 for charges of fraud he allegedly perpetrated while running the exchange.

Disclaimer: The former CEO and majority shareholder of The Block has disclosed a series of loans from former FTX and Alameda founder Sam Bankman-Fried.

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