King James may not be in the playoffs, but he’s got it on lock off the court.
Sport is a magnificent beast. Careers are made from a young age, men and women all have to start somewhere. For the most part we judge an athlete based on their on-field performance, which is fair enough. However, it’s the choices behind closed doors and away from the sporting arena that catch our eye. Real wealth is made off the field—investment choices that either protect an athlete from complete financial ruin or propel their worth well beyond their wildest dreams. In some cases it can go the other way and also ruin their financial freedom. For LeBron James however, there’s been some serious money deals and investments that will protect him, his family and many others from ever needing money ever again.
Players make their wealth by investing all the time. King James isn’t the only famous NBA player to have invested his money the right way, Shaquille O’Neal has built his wealth on the back of endless investments, which included Five Guys, Papa Johns, Krispy Kreme, gyms and carwashes. He’s even a minority owner of the Sacramento Kings.
While King James won’t be making a playoff appearance this year, he’s sorted when it comes to smart investments of his money and time. At LeBron’s stage of life endorsements from Nike and other major companies are but a fraction of the smart choices made off field by King James. LeBron’s salary of $430 million USD a year is spread across multiple investments. Some are startups, others not so much. So let’s have a look at how King James has invested his money over the years.
Okay, this investment is nothing short of risk. James exited his deal with the fast food monolith McDonalds to back a startup pizza company called Blaze Pizza, where James forked out $15 million USD. Since James’ handsome investment the pizza startup has passed the friendly ‘family’ pizza stage, as it’s become the fastest growing restaurant chain in the world.
Liverpool Football Club
James’ money may come from the NBA, however, it’s the EPL that caught his attention. James’ stake in Liverpool FC was originally worth $6.5 million USD, only to have that increase in value reaching over $43 million USD. The famous move saw James purchase 2% of the world-renown football club, while also obtaining various marketing rights. To this day, it’s considered to be one of the greatest sporting investments ever made by an athlete from another sporting code.
Beats By Dre
The doctor of beats, made James the doctor of all things investments. This is by far James’ greatest return on investment. Originally, there was an assumption James held a fraction stake in the audio company founded by Dr. Dre. It was reported James would earn a $30 million USD payout when Apple purchased Beats in 2014. We have learned since that’s just not the case. James as a silent investor made $700 million USD before tax when Apple purchased the company. If that isn’t one of the greatest investments made by an athlete we don’t know what is.