Max Verstappen Signs $53M Annual Extension with Red Bull
The 2021 Formula 1 champion will be racing under the Red Bull logo for years to come. Max Verstappen announced on Wednesday that he has signed an extension with the racing team that will keep him there until the end of the 2028 season, at the very least. The deal is worth a reported $53 million per year and is subject to bonuses, which puts him on track with his F1 rival Lewis Hamilton.
Serena Ventures Raises $111M for Startup Fund
Serena Williams is looking to build. The 23-time grand slam champ started Serena Ventures in 2014 and has invested in over 60 companies, but she is planning for its next chapter. Serena Ventures announced on Tuesday that it has raised $111 million, which it plans to invest in early-stage companies with the goal of diversifying the start up community. The funds will be primarily earmarked for companies run by women and people of color with a goal of expanding inclusivity in the VC space.
New York Liberty Fined $500K by NBA for Providing Charter Flights
As reported exclusively by Sports Illustrated, the WNBA has fined the New York Liberty $500,000 — a league-record punishment for a WNBA team — after providing charter flights to its players during the second half of last season. The league cited a violation of the collective bargaining agreement and competitive advantage. Originally, the WNBA intended to bring down a $1 million fine on the Liberty, but an appeal reduced it by half. Additionally, Liberty executive Oliver Weisberg will no longer serve on the WNBA executive committee.
Euphoria Becomes HBO’s Second-Most-Watched Series of All Time
Prior to Sunday’s second season finale, Euphoria had already set records for HBO and HBO Max. The Zendaya-led drama is the most-tweeted-about television series of the decade. The second season premiere, aired Jan. 9, registered 2.4 million viewers and became the highest-ever digital premiere for an HBO series. Tuesday, HBO confirmed that Euphoria is now the second-most-watched HBO series since 2004 — second only to Game of Thrones.
MLB, MLBPA Fail to Reach Agreement, Cancel First Two Series of Season
The negotiations continue for Major League Baseball. The MLB and MLBPA failed to reach an agreement on Tuesday, leading the league to cancel the first two series of the upcoming season. The two sides are reportedly far apart on a number of key issues, including minimum salaries, bonuses, and tax thresholds.
FanDuel Drives $1.9B in Revenue for Flutter
In its Q4 sales call, FanDuel parent company revealed a strong quarter for the mobile sports-betting giant. FanDuel posted $1.9 billion in revenue, outpacing last year’s numbers by 113%. The earnings results signal positive pay off for the parent company’s massive investment in advertising for FanDuel, and set up continued growth in 2022.
U.S. Soccer Signs Blockbuster Deal with Turner Sports
The last few weeks have been big for U.S. Soccer. On Tuesday, the U.S. Soccer Federation announced that it has signed an eight-year deal with Turner Sports, worth an estimated $200 million. The rights deal will enable Turner Sports networks to serve as the sole provider of 20 games each year. For Turner Sports, this furthers its efforts to carve out a corner of the live sports market for its property, HBO Max. In addition to the game rights, it will also enable player storytelling across Turner Sports channels and grant Bleacher Report with exclusive access to highlights and digital content.
AMC Posts Strongest Earnings Performance in Two Years
After early reports indicated a strong performance, AMC confirmed that it had posted what top-level executives deemed the “strongest quarterly results in two full years” on Tuesday, generating a “year-ending liquidity position of more than $1.8 billion.” The movie theater chain saw a huge return of movie fans, hosting nearly 60 million guests, an enormous leap from just over 8 million during the previous year. The announcement comes in the lead up to one of the most hotly anticipated theater releases of the last few years, with Batman set to hit big screens later this week.
Dallas Front Office Hedges on Amari Cooper’s Future
When asked about his longevity with the team, the Cowboys’ EVP Stephen Jones would not commit to what was next for its star receiver. The four-time Pro Bowler is set to earn $22 million in 2022, and sending him elsewhere would save the team $16 million in cap space. Boardroom dove deep on what could be next for Cooper and the Cowboys.
Snapchat Brings You Inside LeBron James’ Childhood Bedroom
One of the many blockbuster commercials included in this year’s Super Bowl line up was Crypto.com’s collab with King James. The ad demonstrated the power of dreaming, zooming in on a young LeBron envisioning his future from his childhood room. Following the ad’s success, Snapchat has developed a lens that will take you to Akron, recreating James’ bedroom. It also offers a quick and easy QR code to download the crypto.com app.