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Former TSM CEO, LCS sponsor FTX’s CEO receives 25-year prison sentence

The Founder and CEO of FTX Sentenced to 25 Years in Prison for Stealing Billions of Dollars from Customers

The founder and CEO of the now bankrupt crypto-exchange FTX, which had major sponsorship deals with TSM and the LCS in the League of Legends esports scene, has been sentenced to 25 years in prison for stealing billions of dollars from customers.

The Fraudulent Actions of Sam Bankman-Fried

Sam Bankman-Fried, 32 years old, has been sentenced to 25 years in prison for fraud and conspiracy. Federal prosecutors claim that he cost customers, investors, and lenders around $10 billion by misappropriating funds, fabricating documents, lying to investors, and even bribing foreign officials. Prosecutors have labeled Bankman-Fried’s actions as one of the largest financial frauds in history.

TSM LoL roster posing in front of the logo
TSM were not permitted to sport the FTX branding after signing a lucrative deal. Photo via TSM

FTX’s Rise and Sponsorship Deals

Prior to its downfall, FTX was considered one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, valued at $32 billion in January 2022. During its peak in 2021 and early 2022, FTX secured major sponsorship deals with Riot Games and TSM, a renowned League of Legends esports organization.

TSM’s Naming Rights Deal with FTX

In June 2021, TSM signed a 10-year, $210 million naming rights deal. This agreement allowed TSM to rename itself TSM FTX across all its major esports titles. Additionally, TSM received $1 million in FTX Tokens that were distributed among players and employees. However, due to broadcasting and jersey regulations, TSM was not allowed to use the TSM FTX name in VALORANT or League of Legends.

Just two months later, the LCS itself secured a seven-year sponsorship deal with FTX. The crypto exchange sponsored various broadcast segments and appeared on numerous graphics. However, in November 2022, FTX faced bankruptcy and allegations of fraud emerged, along with reports that Bankman-Fried was playing League of Legends poorly during important FTX meetings.

The Uncertain Future for TSM and FTX

Following FTX’s collapse and bankruptcy filing, TSM suspended its partnership with the cryptocurrency exchange. It remains unclear whether either organization will be able to recover any money from the deals after the founder’s sentencing.

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