YouTube star Jimmy Donaldson, better known as MrBeast, is being sued by Virtual Dining Concepts, the company behind his MrBeast Burger.
VDC is seeking upwards of $100 million in damages. It claims the YouTuber and Beast Investments failed to fulfill a contractual obligation to promote the product and publicly support it.
The suit follows Donaldson’s own lawsuit last month targeting VDC, as he sought to terminate the contract on the grounds that the burgers were “disgusting” and “inedible,” and that fans were disappointed to see his name on the product. He stated that while the company had made millions from the partnership, he had “not received a dime.”
“I would [retire MrBeast Burger] if I could but the company I partnered with won’t let me stop.” Donaldson tweeted in June, replying to a fan from London. “Young Beast signed a bad deal.”
The company alleges that these and other statements by Donaldson are untruthful and damaging to their reputation. “This case is about a social media celebrity who believes his fame means that his word does not matter, that the facts do not matter, and that he can renege and breach his contractual obligations without consequence,” VDC stated in their suit. “He is mistaken.”
“This wanton conduct has caused Plaintiffs to suffer enormous financial harm.”
MrBeast Burger originally launched in December 2020 as a virtual burger chain, with the aim of helping restaurants make money during the pandemic – these restaurants would operate as “ghost kitchens” partnered with the brand through VDC, providing the food through delivery apps.
By 2022 the brand expanded to 1,700 partnering locations globally, and one physical restaurant in New Jersey – which opened to a crowd of fans 10,000 strong in September 2022.
The launch was paired with an announcement video by MrBeast, which was deleted on June 17 and re-uploaded three days later. Fans speculated that the re-uploaded video was due to contractual obligations to VDC.
(Photo by Anthony Quintano)