Pop icon Taylor Swift had reportedly signed a sponsorship deal with the now-bankrupt crypto exchange FTX, only for the exchange’s executives to back out, according to an anonymous source familiar with the matter who spoke to CNBC.

The Deal That Never Was

Contrary to public statements praising Swift’s due diligence, the source revealed that Swift had indeed agreed to the deal. The signed agreement was allegedly sent to FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried’s email inbox, where it remained unanswered for several weeks.

According to a report by CNBC’s Make It published on 20 April 2023, Adam Moskowitz, one of the attorneys who is leading a class-action lawsuit against FTX’s celebrity endorsers such as Shaquille O’Neal and Tom Brady, said during an April episode of “The Scoop” podcast:

The one person I found that did that was Taylor Swift. In our discovery, Taylor Swift actually asked them, ‘Can you tell me that these are not unregistered securities?’

The Decision to Pull the Plug

According to CNBC, despite months of negotiations and Swift’s team signing the deal, a group of FTX executives reportedly persuaded Bankman-Fried not to proceed with the $100 million deal. This information apparently aligns with a report from The New York Times, which cited three other sources stating that Bankman-Fried ultimately decided to pull the plug.

The Aftermath

FTX filed for bankruptcy protection in November 2022. Bankman-Fried is currently facing multiple federal charges, including fraud and campaign finance violations. Three other FTX executives — Gary Wang, Caroline Ellison, and Nishad Singh — have pleaded guilty to various federal charges and are cooperating with the government’s prosecution of Bankman-Fried.