• Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels joins FTX’s Global Ambassadors; MLB Superstar to Be Paid in Crypto

  • FTX Trading Ltd., a cryptocurrency firm, announced on Tuesday that Major League Baseball (MLB) legend Shohei Ohtani, also known as “Shotime,” has joined the company’s global ambassadors. Ohtani will be paid in cryptocurrencies and will own a stake in the crypto company, according to the announcement.

    Shotime joins FTX from the Angels.

    Seven-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady and his wife, Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bündchen, joined FTX as global ambassadors at the end of June. Brady and Bündchen starred in a $20 million ad campaign for FTX in early September. Prior to the agreement between FTX Trading Ltd. and Brady, the crypto exchange announced a long-term partnership with MLB. Two months after the ad campaign with Bündchen and Brady, the company announced that Shohei Ohtani, the MLB pitcher, designated hitter, and outfielder for the Los Angeles Angels, has joined FTX’s ambassadors’ list.

    According to the announcement, Ohtani will be compensated entirely in FTX equity and cryptocurrencies. According to the statements, the MLB player’s acceptance of crypto payments demonstrates his “strong belief in both FTX and the crypto industry.” During the Midsummer Classics, Ohtani, also known as “Shotime,” became the first MLB player in 88 years to be named an All-Star as both a pitcher and a hitter. According to the agreement between Ohtani and FTX, the MLB player will serve as a spokesperson for the crypto firm.

    Ohtani, according to FTX, will “further elevate the FTX brand, increasing awareness of the company’s platform.” FTX’s founder and CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried, explained in a statement that the company is always looking for partners who share its vision. “Shohei has emerged as a transcendent player in baseball in a relatively short period of time, and this, combined with his support for digital assets, made it an easy decision to enter into a partnership with him,” Bankman-Fried said. FTX’s CEO went on to say:

    Off the field, Shohei has a passion for bettering the global community, which he and FTX share, and we’re excited to work with Shohei on various charitable initiatives, particularly those that benefit animals.

    FTX has agreements with Ohtani, Brady, Bündchen, and the MLB, as well as a naming deal with the professional esports organization TSM and the naming rights to the Miami Heat’s arena. No one knows if FTX’s foray into the world of sports is paying off in terms of gaining new clients, but the crypto exchange currently holds one of the top positions in the industry in terms of global trade volume.

    According to coinmarketcap.com, FTX has approximately $22.7 billion in 24-hour global trade volume, while Coingecko.com metrics show that FTX.US, the company’s platform for Americans, has approximately $686.9 million. The company provides both spot market cryptocurrency exchange and derivatives, and it has the world’s second-largest market for crypto derivatives, trailing only Binance’s $14.8 billion in open interest. FTX saw $9.3 billion in crypto derivatives open interest over the last day across 170 perpetuals and 627 futures markets.

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