Home » Cristiano Ronaldo could be sued for more than $1bn over Binance adverts

Cristiano Ronaldo could be sued for more than $1bn over Binance adverts

by Alex Browne

The former Manchester United attacker, Cristiano Ronaldo, faces a lawsuit in the United States over his promotion of Binance, which is the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world.

According to the BBC report, Ronaldo is facing a daunting class lawsuit over his promotion of the cryptocurrency exchange company.

The plaintiffs claim that his endorsement resulted in them making poor investments which saw them lose a great deal of money. Consequently, they are seeking damages to the tune of over $1bn (£790m).

The Peoples Person recently reported on the business empire that the legendary striker has been building over the years. Furthermore, Forbes recently labelled the Portuguese all-time leading goal scorer as the highest paid athlete in the world.

Despite his wealth and success, such a gigantic lawsuit could not only be crushing financially but also to his growing reputation in the business world.

In November 2022, Binance announced its first “CR7” collection of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in partnership with Ronaldo, which the footballer said would reward fans “for all the years of support”.

These NFTs are virtual assets that can be bought or sold but they are only digital. Their primary function is to be used to mark ownership of a video game or photo online.

The cheapest NFT was priced at a whopping $77 when they first came out but a year later, you can buy one for as little as $1.

The crux of the problem is that the claimants argue that the Portuguese’s promotion of the Binance company led to a “500% increase in searches” for the crypto exchange, which is registered in the Cayman Islands.

They also allege that this resulted in people using the company to invest in “unregistered securities”. According to US Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC), such assets can be considered as securities and celebrities who endorse them must follow American law.

The chair of the SEC, Gary Gensler, asserted recently that celebrities such as Ronaldo must “disclose to the public from whom and how much you are getting paid to promote investment in securities”.

Basically the main issue is that the claimants don’t believe that the Real Madrid all-time leading goal scorer disclosed how much he was being paid to endorse the product.

However, to be fair to the mythical former United number 7, the BBC article states that, “Nigel Green, boss of consultancy firm DeVere Group, said the problems at the heart of the case went wider than just one footballer.”

Green claimed that “it is crucial to recognise that blaming Ronaldo alone oversimplifies a complex issue.” He argued that actually, global regulators are the major issue and they have been “slow to establish clear guidelines for this evolving financial landscape.”

Moreover, legal issues are not uncommon in this business. This month, the US Justice Department ordered Binance to pay $4.3bn (£3.4bn) in penalties and forfeitures. The crime was supposedly aiding people to bypass global sanctions and therefore, assist criminals and terrorists in moving money from nation to nation.

Furthermore, chief executive Changpeng Zhao resigned from the firm, having admitted money-laundering violations in the past.

Major League Baseball, Formula 1 and Mercedes-Benz are all also facing class action lawsuits over their promotion of failed crypto-exchange FTX.

Nonetheless, the threat of legal action hasn’t stopped Ronaldo and Binance from planning on working together in the future as they posted on social media recently that they are “cooking something up”.

It has been reported here that the legendary player is also in hot water with the Spanish tax authorities. His Insparya Medical Clinic, which deals in hair transplants, is said to have “issued several invoices without VAT to hundreds of clients between 2019 and 2021”. It could be an expensive year or two for the man from Funchal.

The player that some argue is the greatest of all time clearly has a lot on his plate in the business world and at such a high level, lawsuits and legal issues seem to be inevitable at some point. However, even for someone with the wealth of Ronaldo, he will most certainly be hoping to win a case which involves such eye-watering sums.


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