Esports organisation Team SoloMid, better known as TSM (or TSM FTX), is “consulting legal counsel” following the bankruptcy of a major sponsor – cryptocurrency exchange platform FTX.
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As reported by the New York Times, FTX was paying TSM £17.6million ($21million) per year for 10 years, as part of the sponsorship deal that led to the organisation adopting the “TSM FTX” branding. Speaking at the time of the deal’s announcement, former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried compared the deal to the likes seen in more conventional sports, saying: “Taking a huge industry and then reimagining it in a digital age: that’s sort of what esports are to sports, and it’s sort of what crypto is to investing and to finance.”
FTX’s fortunes have changed somewhat dramatically since then, however. The company declared bankruptcy last week, after it was hit by £5billion ($6billion) of withdrawal requests following rumours about company’s poor financial health.
FTX’s collapse has invited further scrutiny of the company, with the US Securities and Exchange Commission reportedly looking into its activities. Bankman-Fried has resigned as CEO, telling Reuters that he is now in the Bahamas (where FTX is based), though a report claims that he and his fellow former FTX executives are looking for ways to flee to Dubai as they face supervision from the local authorities in the Bahamas.
All of which is hardly great news for the company’s sponsorship deal with TSM, who insists that the organisation remains “stable and profitable” despite the ongoing drama of their former sponsor (via PC Gamer).
TSM Statement on FTX pic.twitter.com/nbiCCnciNF
— TSM FTX (@TSM) November 13, 2022
“Along with the rest of the world, TSM has been closely following the situation surrounding FTX,” TSM announced via Twitter. “We have no insight into the matter other than what has been reported publicly. We are currently consulting legal counsel to determine the next best steps to protect our team, staff, fans, and players.
“To be clear, TSM is built on a solid foundation. We are stable and profitable, and we continue to forecast profitability for this year, next year, and beyond. We look forward to a great year in 2023.”
The collapse of FTX is unlikely to harm TSM all that much – the organisation is huge, with Forbes ranking it as the world’s most valuable esports company at a value of £454million ($540million). The org’s website still lists the branding of “TSM FTX,” though this could well be due to contractual obligations more than anything else.
In other gaming news, the Bible has launched on Steam.