Footballers investing in start-ups shocker!
We've heard of footballers investing in bars, clubs and even fashion brands, but an interesting article published recently in ElConfidencial has highlighted the growing tendency for top footballers in La Liga to invest in start-ups.
A good example is Gerard Piqué at Barcelona football club, who has become a player in videogames by helping to found Kerad Games - whose aims include the design, production and marketing of online games. One of their newly published videogames is called Golden Manager, a Spanish version of the classic Football manager.
Meanwhile the Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has invested some of his huge fortune in a Portuguese start-up Mobitto, initially described as a mobile lifestyle app that rewards people by giving shopping discounts on the things they like the most. His team-mate at Real, Álvaro Arbeloa has also shown an interest in web ventures, and has invested (along with his brother Yago) in Club Santa Monica, a private travel internet club but one that has struggled with financial targets. It remains to be seen whether that venture will resurface.
Perhaps the most innovative investment venture by a Spanish footballer, has been by Juan Mata who currently plays in the English Premier League for Chelsea football club. He's opted for an investment in Perso.na , a social network where users can share their videos, pictures, and music likes by integrating their Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, Tumblr and Vimeo accounts.
There are of course, many cases of footballers investing along traditional lines. Iker Casillas at Real Madrid is a part-owner of Ikerca, a property and car-parking management company. Leo Messi, the Barcelona mega-star, is a part-founder of Limecu which is dedicated to buying, leasing and selling of rustic and urban estates. His team-mate Andres Iniesta is investing in the family vineyard Bodega Iniesta, whilst the Madrid international Sergio Ramos has plans to help open a gourmet market in Seville. No doubt other footballers are sticking to property investment and/or opening bars.
But, for start-up entrepreneurs, it is a hopeful sign for the industry, to see professional footballers investing in their sector. The search for funding is always a key factor in expanding this type of business, and despite higher risks, the chance of hitting on a big success or improving one's image, must be a big incentive for footballers tempted by placing a punt on a new web venture.
For more on footballers from La Liga investing in start-ups read this (in Spanish)
Tutorial for the Golden Manager video strategy game.