As my startup is in the sports industry, I follow industry news closely. Looks like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband, Paul, has just made a large private investment in a startup football league called the UFL (United Football League). According to the Silicon Valley/SJ Business Journal,
The UFL, a startup pro football league founded by San Francisco investment banker Bill Hambrecht, continues to attract new money.
The league said Monday it pulled in an additional $30 million from a consortium of backers that has expanded to include financier Paul Pelosi, the husband of Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco. The most recent funding comes on top of approximately $20 million in a first round of capital from original supporters Hambrecht and Tim Armstrong, a Google Inc. senior executive.
League officials said the UFL will begin its inaugural season in October.
The league will have four teams and a six-week schedule with playoffs/championship likely around Thanksgiving. Moreover, the league will target players who did not make NFL rosters in July and August.
As an entrepreneur working in the sports industry, I am excited by this new league and have profiled other ‘minor’ league sports entrepreneurs such as Brandt Andersen of the NBA’s D-League. We love entrepreneurs who bring creativity and capital, help build talent, and offer more affordable/family friendly professional sports opportunities to markets demanding.
Alternatively, as an entrepreneur who pays taxes, I find it insane that the Speaker of the House can outline trillions in government spending and claim the economy is in need of life support, when members of her own family are making investments in growth at this very moment. And not to go too deep, but isn’t investing in football an investment in purely American markets — from consumers to corporate sponsors and partners? To me there is a disconnect between her public pronouncements, posturing, and policy recommendations and her family’s personal financial activities. Any thoughts? Am I out of bounds?