After all of the speculation, Shaquille O’Neal has officially sold his minority ownership stake of the Sacramento Kings.
The basketball legend-turned-investor made the announcement on his Twitter page.
— SHAQ (@SHAQ) January 13, 2022
“As a result of a new business endeavor, I was required by NBA rules to sell my interest in the Sacramento Kings. I want to thank the fans, the city of Sacramento, Vivek Ranadive and the entire Kings organization for our great partnership. I loved being an owner of such a forward-thinking organization and I hope to be back someday,” O’Neal shared in a statement via Twitter. “I was fortunate to have Arctos help me with this transaction. I’m sure they will be a great partner for Vivek, the Kings, and the NBA going forward. Till we meet again…”
According to Sports Illustrated, Shaquille O’Neal purchased a share of the Kings back in 2013. However, it’s unclear how much the sale of his stake netted him in a profit.
As AfroTech previously reported, Shaquille O’Neal signed a deal to become a brand ambassador for premier mobile sports betting app WynnBET that made him the brand’s new face. As part of his exclusive partnership, O’Neal would be required to sell his minority stake in the Sacramento Kings — which equals out to roughly 2-4% of an NBA team that’s now valued at $1.9 billion (What’s interesting is that the team was reportedly valued at $534 million at the time he became partial owner). However, the idea of this new partnership is to help bolster WynnBET’s profile with the support of a prominent sports figure.
NEWS: Shaq has been named a brand ambassador for @WynnBET and will be the face of advertising campaigns across TV, digital, and print.
To comply with NBA rules, Shaq will have to sell his minority stake in the Sacramento Kings.
He's up ~250% since he acquired the stake in 2013. pic.twitter.com/vu9t2TLS44
— Joe Pompliano (@JoePompliano) August 9, 2021
Per the NBA rules, anyone who participates in the sports gambling space must not have a vested interest in any team, as this can create a conflict of interest. For that reason, when Shaq decided he would enter into the sports gambling space — and, specifically, become a brand ambassador for a sports gambling platform — his ownership in the Kings may have created a conflict of interest.
Shaquille O'Neal's Business Ventures
Shaq retired from the NBA in 2011 and was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2016. As AfroTech previously reported, he has since gone on to dominate investments, with a vested interest in everything from a chicken franchise to Papa John’s, Playboy, and Annie Anne’s.