Daymond John is now defending himself against a report that claimed he inflated the price of live-saving N95 masks in the midst of an airborne virus pandemic.
The Miami Herald reported on Wednesday that the serial entrepreneur and Shark Tank star was attempting to negotiate a deal that would provide 1 million masks to the state of Florida for an inflated price of $7 each. The deal ultimately fell through.
John quickly ran to social media to defend himself, explaining that the report was inaccurate.
“Today’s Miami Herald story and subsequent reports are false, inaccurate and shows a complete reckless disregard for the truth,” he began in a statement posted to Twitter.
John added that he didn’t even set the prices for the masks and was simply trying to help the state “vet and operate global supply chains and sourcing.”
“Many states were forced to blindly wire money to nefarious parties around the world and ultimately never received correct or safe product,” the founder of FUBU with decades of manufacturing experience, continued.
Jared Moskowitz, Director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management, responded to John’s tweet with a show of support.
“Thank you @TheSharkDaymond for trying to help me save lives. I support the statement below. We will continue to do everything we can to help our doctors and nurses, the hero’s on the front line,” he wrote.
Moskowitz then issued a statement of his own clarifying the situation.
“The Shark Group, which is connected to Daymond John, was always completely professional. To set the record straight, at the time this was executed we were competing against all 50 states and the federal government for limited qualities of PPE and these were the going rates for masks. Daymond was only trying to help me procure and vet the equipment,” he explained.
The global shortage of the appropriate amount of PPE materials, such as N95 masks, for healthcare workers has amplified the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.