No, your $21 Million(!) deposit is not refundable


Code Monkey
Staff member
Daisuke Enomoto is a Japanese internet-made millionaire after our own heart. His dream was simple... fly into space and then do a space walk wearing a suite modeled after his favorite Gundam character, Char Aznable. For his space experiment his plan was to assemble Gundam toys in the zero gravity environment.

For anime fans & geeks everywhere, this was a bold plan that was to be admired. That is the kind of plan that would unite geeks all over the world for a few moments of shared comraderie. And for just $21 million dollars, Space Adventures, the privately held firm that handles Russia's space tourists, was going to make it possible.

But then the problems started.

Space Adventures said sure, everything was good to go, Russia approved the space walk and everything was fine. Oh, and by the way, we need an extra $10 million for the spacewalk.

After that I think the conversation went something like this...
Space Adventures (SA): OK, just send us that $10 million and we're all set.
Enomoto: No! That wasn't the deal and I am not paying any more.
SA: No, no, seriously... pay up. $10 million please.
Enomoto: No. I already paid $21 million and that was the agreement.
SA: It would be in your best interests to pay us.
Enomoto: No.
SA: Look, we're not joking. Pay up.
Enomoto: Never!
SA: So you're not going to give us more money?
Enomoto: Correct
SA: Are you sure?
Enomoto: Yes.
SA: Well, in that case hold a minute...
SA: Looking over the results of your health test, it looks like you failed. So sorry, but you have been bumped from the flight and have been replaced by somebody else was willing to "invest" with us. Oh, and your $21 million is non-refundable.
Enomoto: Wait, what?
SA: Yes, you failed your health test. Nothing we can do, sorry. Have a good day!
Enomoto: You can't do that! Give my money back!
SA: No, it is our money now. We are keeping it. Is there anything else we can help you with today?
Enomoto: Give me back my money!
SA: There is no reason to get upset, sir!
Enomoto: You crooks! Give me my money!
SA: Have a good day, sir.
Needless to say Enomoto was not happy and is now suing Space Adventures.

You can get all of the details in this Wired article.