Conor McGregor is being 'sued' by close friend Artem Lobov for millions over Proper Twelve dispute
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Conor McGregor is being 'sued' for millions by close friend Artem Lobov over his Proper Twelve whiskey.
Lobov, a long-time sparring partner for McGregor, alleges he 'came up with the idea' and was 'instrumental in developing the brand'.
The UFC superstar sold his controlling stake in the business, alongside two other shareholders, for a combined £500 million last year.
According to the Irish Independent, Lobov believes he's entitled to 'five percent of McGregor's profits from the sale' of the brand' and has opened court proceedings in Ireland.
McGregor will reportedly contest the lawsuit, which is likely to be worth tens of millions of pounds.
Lobov's solicitor Dermot McNamara said: "My client is a retired professional fighter with a master’s degree from DCU in Finance and Capital Markets.
"We have issued High Court proceedings on his behalf to enforce an agreement with Mr. McGregor regarding the Proper No. Twelve whiskey brand.
"My client was the initial creator and co-founder of the concept to launch an Irish whiskey brand associated with Mr. McGregor.
"As these matters are now before the court, we will not be making any further comment."
A spokesperson for McGregor told SPORTbible: "Proper No. Twelve Irish Whiskey was created, devolved, branded and tirelessly promoted by Conor McGregor. Any suggestion that the plaintiff has a claim to Proper No. Twelve is incorrect."
Lobov carved a career in the UFC following McGregor's debut in the promotion.
The Russian-born fighter, who is based in Ireland, went 2-5 in the UFC before being released by Dana White.
He picked up a notable win over Chris Avila on the undercard of McGregor's blockbuster rematch against Nate Diaz at UFC 202 back in August 2016.
McGregor, meanwhile, is on a two-fight losing streak, having lost back-to-back fights to Dustin Poirier.
He suffered a leg break in his last outing, but is closing in on his UFC return - with a date in early 2023 mooted.