Crypto exchange FTX inks exclusive partnership with the Miami Heat

The planned partnership between crypto exchange FTX and the Miami Heat basketball team is official.

Announced Wednesday, the deal will see FTX.US become “The Official and Exclusive Cryptocurrency Exchange Partner of the Miami HEAT", per a press statement, beginning with the 2021-22 NBA season. As part of the team, the Heat's home stadium will now be known as "FTX Arena." 

Other parts of the deal include "prominent in-arena signage, hospitality, association with HEAT digital content series, promotions, contests, community engagements and more," the team said.

"We wanted to partner with a city and a franchise that are dynamic, diverse, innovative and always forward-looking,” Sam Bankman-Fried, CEO of FTX, said in a statement. “When it comes to those qualifications, Miami and the HEAT are second to none."

As previously reported, the deal was first hammered out between the NBA team, FTX and county officials. The deal is valued at $135 million, some $90 million of which will be directed to Miami-Dade county over a 19-year period. The deal received approval from the county's Board of Commissioners on March 26 during an at-times contentious board meeting. The funds will be used to support programs that address issues like gun violence and at-risk youth. 

“This is a ground-breaking, first-of-its-kind partnership in our industry that will draw global attention,” Eric Woolworth, president of The HEAT Group’s business operations, said in the statement.  

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