Miami Heat superstar LeBron James made more than $US30 million in cash and stock when Apple paid $US3 billion for Beats Electronics, according to ESPN.
James took a small stake in Beats Electronics during its inception back in 2008, working closely with producers and company co-founders Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre to promote the company’s premium headphones.
For some context, James is paid $US19.1 million per year by the Heat to play basketball. So, his Beats deal netted him more money this year than his basketball playing.
The news was buried in a much bigger story about the future of the Heat. They are reportedly interested in signing Carmelo Anthony this summer, one of the most sought-after NBA superstars.
To sign Anthony, who is a max contract player, James and the Heat’s other stars will have to renegotiate their contracts, potentially taking less money. James’ off-court endorsements and investments are doing so well that he might be willing to take less money.
So, in a weird way, Apple buying Beats could lead to the Heat getting Anthony, creating a dynasty in the NBA.
Here’s James starring in a Beats commercial from recent years:
And here’s James giving all of his Miami Heat teammates their own sets of Beats headphones:
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