Wes Edens is not your typical NBA owner and he took a unique path in order to achieve this goal. After graduating from Oregon State University in 1984, he was hired by Lehman Brothers three years later. Edens worked his way up to managing director over the course of the ensuing six years.After becoming a partner as well, Edens decided to move on in 1993 and it was at this time that he decided to join the BlackRock Asset Investors team. He became a managing director and partner at this firm as well.Fortress Investment Group was the next stop on his road to success. When the group was founded in 1998, Wes Edens was one of the five principal partners involved. He helped to oversee the company’s first initial public offering and he is responsible for what the firm has become today.He was also instrumental in assisting the company during their resounding rebound in the wake of the subprime mortgage crisis.
Stock prices fell precipitously during this period but thanks to the help of Edens, it did not take long for Fortress Investment Group to bounce back.When longtime owner Herb Kohl finally elected to sell the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks, Edens came together with Marc Lasry to submit the winning $550 million bid. The team was in danger of moving to a different city before the purchase but Edens has pledged to invest the money that it will take to build a new arena.He is also placing a major bet on the world of e-sports. Over the past few years, he has made a number of investments in this realm. It started with the $2.5 million purchase of a League of Legends team in 2016 and continued in 2017 with the establishment of the FlyQuest league.
Wes Edens was not content to stop there, though. When the NBA decided to establish a professional NBA 2K league where top notch gamers could compete against one another for real money. 16 of the 30 teams in the NBA have elected to create teams for this venture and it is expected to be instrumental when it comes to engendering fandom in the younger demographics. Console gaming is believed to be one of the key factors in creating younger NBA fans who will grow with the product and Wes Edens is placing a crucial bet on this direction. If his track record is any indication? This is a bet that is about to break his way.