Flo Rida has been awarded $82 million (£67 million) in a lawsuit against Celsius.
According to court documents obtained by Billboard, a Florida jury ruled on Wednesday the Celsius energy drink brand had violated an endorsement deal with rapper Flo Rida, in which additional company stock and ongoing royalties from sales were owed to the My House star.
Flo Rida, whose real name is Tramar Dillard, signed two contracts with Celsius in the mid-2010s which entitled him to a one percent stake in the business if it achieved its sales goals. While Dillard’s lawyers argued Celsius had achieved those goals and now owed him over $75 million (£61 million) in stock, the energy drink company’s lawyers explained the thresholds had not been triggered and Dillard had been paid “far in excess” of what he was owed.
The Celsius lawyers told the jury, “A business deal is a business deal. You don’t get a do-over just because you’re unhappy with the results.”
After a day of deliberations, the Broward County jury sided with Dillard, awarding him $82 million (£67 million) in damages.
“It was a matter of respect,” Dillard’s attorney John J Uustal told Billboard after the ruling was announced. “He was due these shares, he worked for them, and he wasn’t going to just let it go.”
Lawyers for the rapper added in a statement that the jury “understood all these complicated legal issues and, in our view, came to the right conclusion”, and so “the justice system performed well today”.
– Cover Media