Celebrities, Kim Kardashian and Floyd Mayweather, and Cryptocurrency Company Sued for Misleading Celebrity Endorsements

Steven T. Lowe

On January 7, 2022, an investor in the cryptocurrency “EthereumMax” filed a “proposed class action lawsuit” (the lawsuit will not officially become a class action until the judge presiding over the case grants “class certification”) against a boxer, Floyd Mayweather (“Mayweather”), Kim Kardashian (“Kardashian”), and former NBA player, Paul Pierce (“Pierce”). Mayweather, Kardashian, and Pierce promoted the cryptocurrency “tokens” through social media and other outlets.

According to the complaint, EthereumMax’s co-founders only intended to make their potential investors believe that the token was valuable so that the co-founders could unload the tokens at an inflated price. The investor who filed the suit, Ryan Huegerich (“Huegerich”), claims that the co-founders conspired with Mayweather, Kardashian, and Pierce to inflate the price of the tokens.

Mayweather and Pierce both endorsed the tokens in May 2021. Pierce made his endorsement on his social media, while Mayweather tied his endorsement to an upcoming fight with Logan Paul. Following the endorsements by Pierce and Mayweather, the trading volume on the token skyrocketed, reaching nearly five times the volume of the previous day. The volume doubled again, reaching a staggering $107.7 million on May 27, 2021. Kardashian endorsed the token to her more than 250 million followers in June 2021. The volume bottomed out a few months later at $157,400 and has not made a recovery.

The complaint also addresses the fact that “EthereumMax” very closely resembles the name of the second largest cryptocurrency, Ethereum. According to the complaint, this was another strategic decision made in an effort to confuse investors, comparing the intentionally misleading decision to creating and marketing a restaurant named “McDonald’sMax” that has no affiliation with the golden arches.

The complaint includes claims for unjust enrichment, aiding and abetting the violation of the California Consumers Legal Remedies Act, and a violation of the California Unfair Competition Law.

Huegerich is represented by John T. Jasnoch of Scott + Scott Attorneys at Law LLP.

Counsel information for the defendants is unavailable.

The case is Ryan Huegerich v. Steve Gentile et al., case number 2:22-cv-00163, in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

* Lowe & Associates (“The Firm”) is a boutique entertainment and business law firm located in Beverly Hills, California. The firm has extensive experience handling civil cases involving business “torts” such as unfair competition, having provided top-quality legal services to its clients since 1991. The Firm is recognized for its many achievements, including successfully handling many high-profile cases.

Find us at our website at www.LoweLaw.com.