F1 drivers Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris are headline investors in the Elite Performance Fund that aims to specialize in sports technology and media, fan engagement and nutrition.
Manchester United defender Raphaël Varane, a 2018 World Cup winner with France, and João Mário from Portugal’s 2016 European Championship title team are also investors with Lisbon-based fund manager APEX.
“I have been investing in startups for some time now,” Varane said in a statement, adding he aims to “share my investment experiences with other athletes and learn from theirs.”
Tom Brady joined the trend for athlete investment in the wider sports industry last month. The NFL great was announced as having a minority stake in English second-tier soccer club Birmingham by partnering with its holding company, Knighthead Capital Management.
The APEX fund also has investments from Varane’s Man United teammate Christian Eriksen, Belgium defender Jan Vertonghen and Netherlands international Daley Blind.
“Athletes aren’t just our capital sources — they’re our partners,” APEX chief executive António Caçorino said. “They infuse our decisions with genuine insights from their respective sports.”
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