Miami-Dade requests removal of FTX’s name from Heat arena

Miami-Dade requests removal of FTX's name from Heat arena

MIAMI — Miami-Dade County asked a federal bankruptcy judge for permission to immediately end its naming rights agreement with FTX, and remove that brand from the arena where the NBA plays. Miami Heat play.

The county, which is the owner of the arena and negotiated a naming rights agreement with FTX, filed a motion Tuesday stating that continuing to refer the building as FTX Arena would only increase the “enduring hardships” caused by the collapse in the cryptocurrency exchange.

In its motion, the county said that it did not believe that the Debtor would be affected by the termination of the Naming Rights Agreement. “On one hand, Miami-Dade County continues supplying valuable marquee name rights and other benefits the Debtor, to detriment the County’s ability to search for a new naming partner to the Arena.”

A hearing has been scheduled for mid-December. FTX signage is still visible on the building, and its name has not changed.

The Tuesday motion was not surprising. FTX filed for bankruptcy in November 2011. The county and Heat started the process of ending their relationship with the company that day.

The FTX crash has many ties to the world of sports. Many athletes — Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady, Golden State Warriors Guard Stephen Curry, tennis player Naomi Osaka Heat forward Udonis Haslem They were all named last week as defendants in a class-action suit against FTX. They are accused of being culpable for their celebrity status and promoting the company's failing business model.

FTX signed a variety of sports-related deals with other companies, including a sponsorship deal for Major League Baseball and Mercedes for Formula One racing. Mercedes already removed the FTX logo from its race cars.

The Miami building had been known as FTX Arena from June 2021. A $135 million sponsorship agreement was in place between FTX, for a 19-year period. FTX is due $5.5 Million in the next payment on January 1.

As part of the deal, the Heat would receive $2 million per year.

FTX was the third largest cryptocurrency exchange. However, it lost billions of dollars before it filed for bankruptcy protection. Federal and state authorities are currently investigating Sam Bankman Fried, the founder of the Bahamas-based firm, and their alleged investment in ventures using depositors funds without their consent.

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