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FTX’s celebrity endorsements were a big red flag, says the family that put all its money into bitcoin

This is a red-colored creative of a bitcoin symbol inside a globe with an arrow trending downwards.
The Taihuttu family, also known as the bitcoin family are known for putting all their money into the cryptocurrency in 2017.

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  • A Dutch family that put all its money into crypto in 2017 said there were red flags about FTX. 
  • Didi Taihuttu told CNBC that FTX’s celeb endorsements were too unusual for it to be reliable. 
  • "Too many influencers were paid too much money to promote that one," he said.

A Dutch family that poured all their money into bitcoin said FTX’s celebrity endorsements were a big red flag about the now bankrupt crypto exchange. 

In an interview with CNBC, the father of the family Didi Taihuttu said something was "really off" about FTX, despite it being one of the largest centralized exchanges before blowing up in November, after suffering a severe liquidity crunch. 

The family of five rose to fame after they sold all their assets to buy bitcoin in 2017, when the cryptocurrency was trading at a fraction of its current price at around $900. After living in Portugal for its 0% crypto tax, the Taihuttu’s told the outlet they’ve shifted residence to Phuket, Thailand, are are living on 0.3 bitcoin a month – about $5,000. 

Speaking about FTX, Taihuttu said: "Too many influencers were paid too much money to promote that one," adding that trustworthy crypto products and companies don’t usually rely so heavily on endorsements. 

FTX has invested millions in promotions like high-profile partnerships with celebrities and athletes like Tom Brady, as well as top influencers. It also had a 19-year sponsorship of the Miami Heat for $135 million. Those celeb individuals, including Brady, Steph Curry and Larry David have now been hit with a lawsuit by FTX investors in the wake of the exchange’s shocking collapse. 

Amid chaos in crypto markets following FTX’s downfall, Taihuttu still championed bitcoin, and told CNBC that they keep 73% of their crypto tokens in cold storage, which is a way of storing cryptocurrency offline away from hackers on the internet. 

He said the avalanche of crypto bankruptcies and failed tokens shows "bitcoin is the king," and "completely different than all other projects."

Industry experts have sounded the alarm on contagion fears following FTX’s collapse as crypto lender BlockFi recently filed for bankruptcy, while Genesis is seeking out restructuring lawyers to prevent the company from going bust. 

Bitcoin was trading up 1.37% Thursday to $17,110.73, per CoinMarketCap.

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