Whether people want to start their own crypto or NFT project or are looking to make an investment, interest in the blockchain space is growing. One of the main ways that crypto and NFT projects are promoting their offerings among potential investors is through endorsements from popular celebrities and influencers.
In some cases, the project itself is started by a popular celebrity. One example of this is the SwipaTheFox NFT project launched by NBA superstar De’Aaron Fox. Many investors claimed that they fell for a scam, so let’s look at whether Fox actually launch a crypto scam.
Promised Incentives to Entice Buyers
In this day and age, cryptocurrency and the blockchain is all the rage and a number of people are looking for an opportunity to jump on the bandwagon. So when a household name like De’Aaron Fox launches an NFT project that promises to increase in value, you can’t say no.
In December 2021, Fox announced his upcoming project, which would have NFT avatars on the Ethereum blockchain. On January 15, 2022, the project went live and investors could get a chance to create their own SwipaTheFox avatars.
As a way to entice investors into buying the NFTs, Fox promised all-star tickets and one-on-one experiences like fan-meetings with him. Moreover, he also promised that some investors would get a chance to win a scholarship to the University of Kentucky, his alma mater, or access to a virtual basketball court in the metaverse. In the end, he never got around to fulfilling any promises.
Shut Down The Project After 2 Months
Later on, on February 23, the social media accounts for the NFT project were deleted and most of the discussions on Discord were disabled. This came as a shocking rug pull to investors who assumed that they had put their money into something legitimate.
A day later, Fox decided to make the announcement of the project’s indefinite cancelation via tweet. On twitter, the NBA superstar made excuses that the project was ill-timed and that he couldn’t execute it according to his expectations.
Many financial analysts found that the total worth of the investments by people who bought the NFTs amounted to $1.5 million. Investors were very unhappy as they realized that they had been scammed by a famous athlete. But to many, none of it made sense.
Fox was still in the first year of a five-year long $163 million contract with the Sacramento Kings. So if he was already so rich, why put his reputation on the line for a mere $1.5 million?
No Indication That He Will Reimburse All Investors
At the time of the tweet, Fox hinted at potentially coming back to the project and developing it so that it would meet his expectations, but all SwipaTheFox social media accounts are currently inactive. Even so, nothing is for sure as months have passed since the NBA season ended and there is no announcement of the investors being compensated.
According to some reports, there is no indication that he will compensate all investors who purchased NFTs. Rather, it’s likely that he will only focus on pacifying a few investors through buybacks or autographed jerseys that could offer some value.
But aside from these consolation tokens, investors can’t get their money back, because unlike the stock market, NFTs aren’t regulated by a supervisory authority. Hence, it’s quite unlikely that Fox will have to face time for his actions.
All things considered, it can be stated that De’Aaron Fox launched a crypto scam by creating an NFT project and suddenly shutting everything down in two months. Moreover, investors are unclear about what they can do to get their money back.
Since it was an NFT project and the NFT space is currently unregulated, they won’t be able to file a lawsuit. While they can wait to be reimbursed, it’s highly unlikely.