Culture

By: Christian Yang
September 22th, 2019

Joseph Tsai is now the owner of the Brooklyn Nets.

Tsai is a Taiwanese-Canadian businessman and co-founder/vice chairman of Alibaba Group. Before Tsai became the business mogul he is today, he attended Yale University, played lacrosse and received a BA in Economics/East Asian Studies & a Juris Doctor degree from Yale Law School.

After Graudation, Tsai started out as a tax associate in New York and then transitioned into private equity as a vice president of a small firm. Tsai then left to Hong Kong to join an Asian private equity firm which allowed him to meet Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba.

Once he met Jack Ma, he left his $700,000/yr job and joined Ma in creating Alibaba for a jackpot of close to nothing. The 18 founders of Alibaba accepted a salary of $600/yr. Tsai operated as the COO, CFO and a founding member and established the financial & legal structure of Alibaba alone. Tsai is the second largest individual shareholder of Alibaba behind Ma.

Tsai invested in the Brooklyn Nets in 2017 purchasing 49% from the current owner at the time for $2.3 billion and negotiated an option to buy the remaining stake of the team no later than 2021. He exercised that option this year in August and also bought the Nets' arena for nearly $1 billion in a separate deal.

Tsai has invested heavily in sports and now owns or partially owns the Brookyln Nets, Long Island Nets, Nets Gaming Crew, New York Libery, and the San Diego Seals. Through his sports investment and holding vehicle 'J Tsai Sports', Tsai has investments in Upstart Field Lacrosse League, Premier Lacrosse League, Los Angeles FC and several sports media and technology companies based in North America and Asia.

Tsai is betting big on sports, but with the moves the Nets have made this off season in signing Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant are huge and have them looking like the favorite in the East for years to come.