williamson, loan, Zion Williamson

Zion Williamson And Family Sued By Tech Company For Breach Of Contract For $1.8M Loan

The professional basketball career of Zion Williamson, who was once touted as the next big thing in the NBA, has been going differently than planned. The oft-injured New Orleans Pelicans center has been a letdown on the court, and now he is facing a lawsuit over a loan he hasn’t paid back.

According to The Associated PressWilliamson and several of his immediate family members are being sued by Ankr PBC, a California-based company specializing in blockchain-related technologies which filed a civil lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in New Orleans. In its filed paperwork, Ankr PBC claims that Williamson, his stepfather, Lee Anderson, and his mother, Sharonda Sampson, still need to pay $1.8 million of a $2 million loan given to them by the company.

Ankr PBC provided the loan in September 2021. It was trying to establish a marketing relationship with the NBA player in hopes that Williamson would become a spokesperson for it.

The company says that Anderson acted as Williamson’s business manager and required an initial payment of $150,000 to start negotiating a potential business relationship with his stepson.

“Based on Williamson’s statements to Ankr, Ankr reasonably believed that Anderson possessed the authority to negotiate business arrangements for Williamson,” the lawsuit stated.

Meanwhile, Ankr named Sampson as a defendant, partly because the company wired money into her account after she allegedly told them that the family urgently needed a “bridge loan” to cover investment obligations.

“Anderson represented that the loan was urgently needed, as the family had taken on expensive investments, including the purchase of certain real estate in New Orleans, and could not meet their obligations due to the temporary suspension of payments from Williamson’s sponsorship deals resulting from an injury,” the lawsuit stated.

The loan was supposed to be paid back by August 21, 2022, but Anderson requested several extensions. When Ankr PBC finally did receive a payment, it was for $25,000, and it bounced. Last April, a forbearance agreement was made between the parties, and the company agreed not to sue if it received $500,000 by April 25 and the rest of the loan by July 6.

That $500,000 was received as scheduled, but about $300,000 of it covered interest. Ankr PBC has yet to receive the remaining $1.8 million.