By Katie Roof
Metta Sandiford-Artest, the former pro basketball player also known as Metta World Peace, is planning a new investment fund for his Artest Management Group, according to a person familiar with the matter.
The fund is targeting $1 billion, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the information was private. The fundraising hasn’t begun yet and the target size could still change, the person said.
Focusing on the U.S. and Asia, the new fund would invest in sports real estate and professional teams, as well as startups across health, sports, blockchain technology and real estate. The fund could also potentially be used to acquire businesses and to make a large investment in a Las Vegas professional basketball arena.
Artest plans to work on the fund with advisers including Houlihan Lokey Inc. co-founder Jim Zukin and Boost Mobile Chief Executive Officer Stephen Stokols. Jerry Bias, who co-founded the hedge fund Cyrus Capital Partners, and Stephon Barnes, formerly of Cyrus Capital, are also advising Artest, the person said.
Artest’s National Basketball Association career spanned almost two decades, including with the 2010 league champion Los Angeles Lakers.
He incorporated Beverly Hills, California-based Artest Management Group in 2015 and has invested in companies and projects including EZ Care Link, a platform for nurses and health-care professionals. Artest also invested in Charge Enterprises Inc. and Planet Based Foods Global Inc., both of which went public.
Artest Management Group’s own cap table is being restructured. Existing shareholders in the firm’s technology division include Yintai Investment Co. and The Los Angeles Times.
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