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Kevin Durant combines investment and endorsement in deal with Coinbase

Other than their salaries, NBA stars can make money in a number of ways, primarily through endorsements and investments. Both can be lucrative for a superstar like Kevin Durant and now, in a new partnership with Coinbase, the crypto currency exchange, he’s doing both.

Durant and his agent/partner Rich Kleiman announced Wednesday a somewhat unique deal with Coinbase. The two men’s investment vehicle, Thirty-Five Ventures, will expand their involvement with the exchange to include further investment, a media partnership, philanthropy and even creative help on NFTs.

In its announcement, Thirty-Five Ventures and Coinbase called the deal a “strategic marketing partnership and collaboration.”

The agreement, announced on Wednesday, includes adding Durant as a collaborator, Boardroom as a media partner, and a philanthropic integration with the Kevin Durant Charity Foundation (KDCF). Thirty Five Ventures will work with Coinbase across several strategic paths, from creating NFT drops to storytelling and content around how crypto empowers everyone, NFT education, and highlighting Coinbase’s rapid growth in the industry. Durant and 35V will help unlock creativity and highlight Coinbase’s artist- and creator-first approach to the NFT marketplace.

“Being an early investor in a company you’re excited about is always an amazing feeling,” Durant said in a statement. “Being able to come back a few years later and create an even more in-depth partnership is rare, and we’re fortunate to be building further with Coinbase.”

Durant and Kleiman in fact began investing in Coinbase four years ago. Its value jumped dramatically — an estimated 54-fold — when its stock went public back in April. It’s dropped a bit since.

KD tweeted out news of the partnership Wednesday morning...

Those who track athletes’ wealth have noted that in recent years KD has focused more on his investments than endorsement deals ... and those investments have done exceedingly well. Sportico has estimated Durant’s net worth at $625 million, based on the value of his contract, endorsements and investments.

He has stakes in 70 different properties, as varied as Coinbase, SeatGeek, the online ticketing service used by the Nets; RobinHood, the online brokerage, and Weedmaps, an app that helps marijuana fans find legal dispensaries. In sports, he owns a minority position in the Philadelphia Union of the MLS.

Just last month, the Nets superstar and Kleiman announced they’re setting up a “blank check” company formally known as a “special purpose acquisitions company” (SPAC) called Infinite Acquisition Corp to help them invest further. The two are hoping to raise $200 million, using their successes in the market to entice new investors. The Nets forward will serve as the co-CEO of Infinite Acquisition with Kleiman.