After a South Florida jury found Celsius energy drink makers had violated a contract with rapper and tried to hide the money from him, was awarded $ 82.6 million.
Flo Rida (real name Tramar Dillard) and Strong Arm Productions had sued Celsius Holdings Inc., Boca Raton, in Broward County Court in May 2021. They claimed that the company had violated an endorsement agreement.
“He (Dillard) loved the product, and it's been a very successful four-year relationship,” Uustal said. “There were some benchmarks. He was supposed to get stock when certain things happened. And there became a dispute about whether those benchmarks had been reached. So that's what this was about.”
Celsius lawyers argued in court that the company's greatest success was after the Flo Rida endorsement contract ended. They also argued that other business decisions contributed to higher stock values and sales. Celsius could appeal the verdict. However, it was not immediately clear if they would. The Associated Press reached out to Celsius's attorneys for comment but they didn't respond immediately.
According to the civil complaint, Flo Rida served as a brand ambassador for Celsius between 2014 and 2018. According to the complaint, Dillard was instrumental in the launch of a new era for Celsius's brand development and growth, expansion, and introduction to millions worldwide.
Dillard and his lawyers argued that the partnership allowed Celsius to expand its product range, including adding a powder product to the mix and a new product line called Celsius Heat. This partnership was made possible by Flo Rida. Since then, the company has continuously sold its powder-form products and received revenues.
Attorney John Uustal stated that Flo Rida desired the 1% ownership he was promised, and would still accept the stock over the jury's monetary award.
Uustal stated that Dillard loved the product and it has been a successful four-year partnership. There were benchmarks. He was to receive stock when certain events occurred. There was much disagreement about whether these benchmarks were met. This is what all this was about.
Dillard stated that he still drinks Celsius products and owns stock in the company. Dillard stated that he would like to get over the legal dispute and be able to work again with the company in the future.
Dillard stated, “I'm still an owner in the company.” “And when you've basically planted the seed of something successful, you can only love unconditionally.”