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Alibaba co-founder Joe Tsai acquires Nets, Barclays Center

by Jim Lemuel Wilson, September 19, 2019 1:03pm

The National Basketball Association Board of Governors unanimously approved the sale of the Brooklyn Nets to Joe Tsai, making the Alibaba co-founder the principal owner and governor of the team.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said that Tsai will be of big help to the league, especially with its growth in China.

“We are thrilled that Joe Tsai is becoming the principal owner and governor of the Brooklyn Nets,” said Silver.

“In addition to being a passionate basketball fan, Joe is one of China’s preeminent internet, media, and e-commerce pioneers and his expertise will be invaluable in the league’s efforts to grow the game in China and other global markets,” the commissioner said.

Silver also gave thanks to the previous owners of the team.

“I would also like to thank Mikhail Prokhorov and Dmitry Razumov for their enormous contributions to the Brooklyn community, the Nets organization, and the league. They leave a thriving team, well-positioned for the future.”

Additionally, the Nets made a change in the front office as well.

Leading media and sports executive David Levy was named Chief Executive Officer of the Brooklyn Nets and Barclays Center. Levy will also serve as the President of J Tsai Sports, the sports investment and holding vehicle controlled by Tsai.

Additionally, Levy will join Tsai’s family office as a venture partner, with coverage of sports, media and entertainment investments globally.

In his role as CEO of the Nets and Barclays Center, Levy, who has more than a 30-year career working with the NBA, will oversee all business, revenue, strategy and operations for the franchise and arena.

“David brings a unique combination of sports and media know-how, strategic thinking and operating skills to our sports and entertainment business. He is an entrepreneur at heart with the experience of managing and scaling organizations, and I really look forward to working with him,” said Tsai.

“I am excited and honored to join the Nets organization and look forward to working alongside Joe and the talented forward-thinking executives and team members across the entire organization,” said Levy. “Sean Marks and Kenny Atkinson have done a terrific job instilling a winning culture and I am looking forward to supporting them as we build a sustainable foundation of success on and off the court. I am excited for our fans and can’t wait to get started.”

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