The cryptocurrency market was rocked Friday by the collapse of FTX, which filed for bankruptcy and saw CEO Sam Bankman-Fried resign after his assets plummeted in worth from $16 billion at the beginning of the week to virtually nothing. The fall of FTX, which had been hailed as a trusted crypto platform, is set to have major consequences for its investors, several of whom are major figures on the field and in the business of sports.
One such prominent investor is Tom Brady.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB and his now ex-wife Gisele Bundchen are among the celebrity investors in FTX, as the two were announced as having taken major equity stakes in the company in 2021. He has served as a brand ambassador for the company and starred in its commercials, receiving cryptocurrency in return, while Bundchen was named the company’s environmental and social initiatives adviser.
Brady and FTX’s other major investors have now likely lost most if not all of their stake in the company, particularly after a deal for cryptocurrency giant Binance to rescue FTX fell through after a review of the company’s finances.
Brady is far from the only athlete and sports figure that is likely to take a major financial hit from FTX’s downfall.
Those three are part of a group of prominent athletes with FTX ties that also includes NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal, Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence and Boston Red Sox great David Ortiz.
FTX has major sponsorship and business deals with teams and leagues as well. Last December, FTX entered a $10 million international sponsorship with the Warriors, giving the brand a major presence throughout Chase Center and the franchise’s G League and NBA 2K teams. FTX also held the naming rights to the Miami Heat’s home arena and was a sponsor of Mercedes’ Formula 1 team.
On Friday evening, the Heat, along with Miami-Dade County, released a statement saying they are terminating their relationship with FTX and are now looking for a new naming rights partner for their arena.
In Brady’s case, FTX’s collapse and its likely effect on his finances is the latest hit to his personal and professional bottom lines. Late last month, Brady and Bundchen announced they finalized their divorce.