The world of sports has had a huge question mark over it for the last few months as coronavirus has put all things at a standstill.
After the NBA announced they’d be suspending the 2019-2020 season until further notice, players were left with big decisions to make. In light of this, we witnessed many members of the league pivot toward other endeavors to occupy their time.
While some turned to philanthropic efforts in their communities, others drew their focus to business ventures — including Indiana Pacers star Victor Oladipo alongside his business partner and marketing manager, James “Jay Belly” Henderson.
Under Henderson’s guidance, Oladipo has amassed an impressive and diverse investment portfolio owning several real estate holdings and significant stakes in a wide range of companies including Airbnb, Cholula Hot Sauce, Adventure Chrysler Dodge and Jeep car dealership, Overtime Sports, Genies Technology, and many more.
Though his career plans always involved entering the business world at some point, Oladipo’s interests in business peaked following a knee injury he sustained which changed his perspective on investments as a whole.
“I had [an] interest in [business] before, but me getting hurt, I wasn’t able to do the things — as far as basketball goes — that I normally do,” he said.
Oladipo used this roadblock as an opportunity to make his business dealings more of a priority by dedicating his spare time to sharpening his skills off the court. As a newcomer to investments, he revealed his visit to tech centers in Silicon Valley as the moment where he gained a new appreciation for business and investing.
“It was always a part of the plan to dive into the business and investment worlds,” Oladipo said.
Along with his dealings in real estate and startup companies, Oladipo also has investments in the music industry as co-owner of Feathery Music Group. The record company — which launched his debut album “V.O.” — add to an already well-established portfolio of blockbuster marketing deals with brands including Jordan, Express, Finishline, Motorola, Hulu, STA Jets, and Fisher Imports, all orchestrated by Henderson.
In addition to his physical prowess as a basketball star, Oladipo — with the help of Henderson — has been able to tap into a new vision, work ethic, and tenacity as a businessman in the last year of investing.
The two have developed a close-knit relationship over the past few years, as they’ve both been instrumental in shaping each other into sharp-witted individuals to make a splash in the business world.
“We have a nice little system with investments,” Henderson said. “[Victor] gives me the opportunity and he trusts in me to go out and find certain [companies] that he knows could benefit his portfolio.”
As far as investments go, both share similar values in the sense that they thoroughly vet the companies they wish to invest in before moving forward. Unlike others in the industry, both revealed a major deciding factor in their vetting process is ensuring they are familiar with the company’s CEO.
“A lot of guys invest in certain companies and never meet the CEO,” said Henderson. “We don’t just want to put money in a 30-person pot and we never meet the person behind the ideas.”
Additionally, Oladipo has his own pact for investing as he makes it a point to align himself with the companies he chooses to add to his portfolio.
“I’m not one to do something I’m not passionate about,” he said. “I’m not going to invest my money into something I don’t believe in.”
While Oladipo is still invested in his NBA career, he’s also focusing on building up his business empire to be as diverse and remarkable as possible across all industries.
Both he and Henderson have committed to being multifaceted businessmen and take the industry by storm by maximizing all of their noteworthy attributes to reach a level of success few have yet to achieve.
“We’re not just investing to invest, we’re investing to change the world,” Oladipo said.
Oladipo hopes to dive more into the world of investments in the coming years and he looks forward to where his journey will lead him to next.