Alibaba's Tsai buys rest of NBA's Brooklyn Nets

FILE PHOTO: Joseph Tsai, Executive Vice Chairman of Alibaba Group, attends the Alibaba Group’s 11.11 Singles’ Day global shopping festival in Shanghai, China, November 11, 2017. REUTERS/Aly Song

(Reuters) – Alibaba Group Holding Ltd co-founder Joseph Tsai is buying a 51% stake that he doesn’t already own in NBA’s Brooklyn Nets and its Barclays arena from Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov, the U.S basketball team said on Friday.

Reuters had reported on Wednesday that the deal would value the NBA team at $2.35 billion.

Tsai had acquired a 49% stake in the team from Prokhorov in April last year.

Brooklyn Nets has been trying to come out of the shadows of storied franchise and local rival New York Knicks, whose home turf is the hugely popular Madison Square Garden.

Nets signed former Most Valuable Player Kevin Durant, who led the Golden State Warriors to three consecutive NBA Finals, and fellow All Star Kyrie Irving this off-season.

Reporting by Soundarya J and Arjun Panchadar in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva

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