1. Jay Z Invests in the Brooklyn Nets (2004, $1 Million)
We decided to go with Jay Z's initial investment in the Nets, as the details of his sale of ownership are somewhat murky. In 2004, Jay Z put money down to be a part of an ambitious project that was more or less completed in 2012. What made it profound was that Jay was in the process of expanding his brand and going beyond the music industry in terms of revenue. Jay was one of the first to invest in not just a sports team, but in a construction project that was started to bring the team to Brooklyn. It was around this time that the prospect of being an emcee/businessman took on corporate proportions.