(ESI Illustration) Image credit: TSM FTX
North American esports organisation TSM has issued a statement seeking to reassure shareholders and fans following the collapse of its naming rights sponsor FTX.
TSM struck a $210m deal with the cryptocurrency exchange (~£178m) in 2021, which saw the organisation rename to TSM FTX. The deal also included the team purchasing $1m (~£850,000) in FTT, FTX’s native token which has formed part of its financial woes.
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FTX, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, collapsed after a chaotic week that culminated in the exchange filing for bankruptcy in Deleware, US on October 11th. Ex-CEO Sam Bankman-Fried apologised to users and investors for ‘ending up here‘.
The statement sought to reassure TSM’s own shareholders and fans that it would be able to maintain fiscal stability in spite of the loss of one of its principle sponsors. The team retains sponsorships with American insurance firm Geico, car manufacturer General Motors, and PC peripheral brand Logitech.
In the statement, TSM announced it was seeking legal advice to protect its team, staff, fans and players, and said it had no insight into FTX’s situation other than what had been reported publicly.
TSM also claimed to be “stable and profitable” and that it was built on a solid foundation. The organisation asserted that it continued to forecast profitability for “this year, next year and beyond.”
The statement comes after Brazilian organisation FURIA cancelled its $3.2m (~£2.7m) deal with the exchange on Friday directly after the bankruptcy announcement.
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FTX also has a deal with the League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) and Nerd Street Gamers, neither of whom have commented on the status of their partnerships.
TSM’s statement reads: “Along with the rest of the world, TSM has been closely following the situation surrounding FTX. We have no insight into the matter other than what has been reported publicly. We are currently consulting legal counsel to determine the best next 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.”
Patrick is a freelance writer for ESI based in London, reporting on esports marketing and partnerships trends. He's currently playing VALORANT and Overwatch but always looking for the next big thing in competitive gaming.