Alibaba Co-Founder Joseph Tsai Buying Brooklyn Nets for $2.35 Billion 

Tsai will be buying the 51 percent of the franchise he does not already own

Taiwanese Billionaire Joseph Tsai Buying Nets for Record Price of $2.35 Billion
Joseph Tsai, the executive vice chairman of Alibaba Group. (Edmond So/South China Morning Post via Getty)
South China Morning Post via Get
By Evan Bleier / August 14, 2019 11:56 am

Alibaba co-founder Joseph Tsai is betting big that the acquisitions of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving are going to grow the Brooklyn Nets’ net worth.

Already an owner of 49 percent of the team after buying in for $1 billion last year, the Taiwanese billionaire is set to fork over an additional $1.35 billion to buy the remaining 51 percent from Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov, sources told The New York Post.

When Tsai initially purchased his share of the team, the 55-year-old locked in the right to buy the rest of the team up until the start of the 2021-2022 basketball season. Though it isn’t finalized, the deal is expected to be announced this week.

With a total cost of $2.35 billion, the amount Tsai is paying for the Nets is the highest price a pro franchise has ever been sold for, trumping the $2.2 billion price David Tepper paid for the Carolina Panthers last year and Tilman Fertitta paid for the Houston Rockets in 2017.

The Post reports the Nets estimate a revenue increase for the upcoming season of 10 to 15 percent.

Tsai, who already owns the WNBA’s New York Liberty, was born in Taiwan and is a Canadian citizen.

He’s worth an estimated $9.3 billion, according to Forbes.

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