Haute 100 SF Update: Vernon Davis Will Be First-Ever Athlete To Be Traded As Stock

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Vernon Davis Credit: Drew Altizer Photography

San Francisco 49ers tight end Vernon Davis is about to be the first ever to be traded like a stock.

San Francisco-based Fantex plans to operate the exchange and will orchestrate Davis’ initial public offering of stock after getting regulatory approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The deal requires Fantex to pay Davis $4 million in exchange for 10 percent of his future earnings, including some of his off-field income. To cover Davis’ fee, Fantex seeks to sell 421,100 shares of stock at $10 a piece. The company hopes to complete the initial public offering in the next few weeks.

Fantex will cover its expenses by taking a small cut of the revenue generated by Davis. Investors who own the Davis tracking stock could profit from a combination of the player’s earnings and gains in the value of their shares.

The income will come from Davis’ career football earnings dating back to last October, as well as any money he makes from off-the-field endorsements or other jobs, such as sports broadcasting, that he gets during the rest of his life. The deal only covers earnings tied to his success as an athlete. If Davis decides to do something like sell insurance after his playing days are over, Fantex won’t receive any of that money. His income from his holdings in a Jamba Juice franchise and a San Jose art gallery is already excluded.

Davis, 30, will need to make more than $40 million just to deliver a small return on Fantex’s investment in him. Fantex is counting on him to earn most of that money after his current contract with the 49ers expires in 2015. Fantex will cover its expenses by taking a small cut of the revenue generated by Davis.

[Sources: Michael Liedtke of the Associated Press; denverpost.com; mercurynews.com]


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