The curious contrition centred around the BitTorrent CEO’s much-lauded charity lunch with Warren Buffett, for which he paid a colossal $4,567,888 only last Sunday. That lunch appointment – Buffett’s famous Ebay PowerLunch – was supposed to happen yesterday, but Sun posted on Tuesday that he was unwell and would have to postpone his meeting with Buffett. Sun said he had kidney stones and would be unable to attend.
However, his ill-health cry off triggered a raft of rumours including one popular theory suggesting he was under investigation from Beijing authorities and was subject to an order which prevented him from leaving China.
Those rumours were swiftly kicked back when Sun live-streamed himself enjoying the high life in San Francisco.
But in an odd twist to the saga, Sun last night published a statement on Chinese social media platform Weibo offering a deeply humble apology for the way he had promoted and marketed the Buffett lunch.
“My intention of having the lunch with Buffett was because of my admiration for him and my enthusiasm for charity,” he began.
“It was simple, but also with self-interest to promote the blockchain industry and my project.
“But my immature, naive, and impulsive conducts with my big mouth have turned it into an out-of-control and failed over-marketing hype and led to a significant series of unexpected consequences.
“During the whole process, I went from being excited, to worried, agonised and then terrified and regretful. It led to a negative influence on the public and also drew concerns from regulators who care about me. Again, I want to say: I am sorry.”
Oddly, Sun referred to “regulators” repeatedly but failed to specify which regulator or indeed which country’s rules he had breached.
He also said he would withdraw from the public eye while he contemplated his “over-marketing”.
“Moving forward, due to my illness, I will take some rest, reduce my publicity on Weibo and media interviews,” he added.
“All the efforts spent on publicity stunt need to go back to technology development.”