The political strategist and online guru who was named President Donald Trump’s 2020 campaign manager Tuesday has a close financial relationship with a penny-stock firm with a questionable history that includes longstanding ties to a convicted fraudster, according to an Associated Press investigation.
Brad Parscale, who played a key role in Trump’s 2016 election victory, signed a $10 million deal in August to sell his digital marketing company to CloudCommerce Inc. As part of the deal, Parscale currently serves as a member of California-based company’s management team.
The company touts itself as “a global provider of cloud-driven e-commerce and mobile commerce solutions.” But records reviewed by the AP raise questions about its current financial picture and its rocky past.
CloudCommerce’s operations have not turned a profit in nearly a decade, the records indicate. The company’s most recent quarterly earnings showed it has spent more than $19 million in investor money since its creation nearly two decades ago and has only $107,000 in cash on hand.
And in 2006, a top executive at the company, which was operating under a different name at the time, was caught in an FBI bribery sting and later pleaded guilty to securities fraud. The company said the former executive no longer has any connection to the company, but documents reviewed by the AP indicate he has remained involved in CloudCommerce’s major corporate decisions in recent years.
Parscale did not answer written questions from the AP about what he knew regarding CloudCommerce and its history when he sold his firm to the company and joined its board of directors.
A press release announcing Parscale’s hiring as Trump’s new campaign manager included Eric Trump calling him “an amazing talent” who has the Trump family’s “complete trust.”