FTX has reached an agreement with Miami-Dade County on a 19-year partnership worth $135 million, to name Miami Heat’s home stadium the FTX Arena.
The cryptocurrency derivatives exchange backed by Alameda Research, is set to become the first member of the crypto industry to secure NBA naming rights, pending approval from the Miami-Dade County Board of County Commissioners on March 26.
The deal marks a significant mainstream partnership for a crypto-based platform, which will see FTX tied to the Miami Heat until 2040. As part of the Miami-Dade County’s press release on March 23, FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried noted:
“This opportunity is more than putting our name on an iconic building. It is a chance to provide value to the growing and diverse community in Miami and its surrounding cities, as well as join a championship community, a championship organization, and a championship culture.”
According to the Miami Herald Miami-Dade County will see $90 million from the deal once expenses and payments to the Miami Heat are deducted, with the funds being divided among the 13 county commissioners and directed toward combating gun violence and poverty.
Legislation allocates “20% of the revenue to each district equally for payments to programs and organizations that either combat gun violence or promote economic prosperity,” with the remaining 80% “distributed based on each district’s share of the county’s “shooting homicides and shooting incidents.”
If the deal is approved, it marks another significant partnership secured by FTX, as the crypto-exchange has been actively expanding its market reach since its launch in 2019.
In August 2020, the crypto exchange acquired Blockfolio for $150 million, a digital asset portfolio tracker with a strong user base of 6 million. Twitter user “Litocoen.eth” summed up the feelings of many by stating the deal was the “smartest acquisition in crypto imo.”
The exchange has listed a variety of tokenized mainstream stocks to attract a broader market. In December, they listed five stocks related to cannabis companies, along with offering traders exposure to Airbnb and pre-IPO derivatives contracts.
Following the reported controversy surrounding retail investors from r/Wallstreetbets and trading platform Robinhood, the exchange-listed a r/Wallstreetbets index of several assets such Doge, AMC Entertainment (AMC), and GameStop (GME).