Stocks and bonds aren’t the only way to invest. Sometimes it literally pays to think outside the box, and look toward more unusual but lucrative means of investing. Sponsoring and funding the work or performance of individuals in return for a share of whatever profit they make is something both private investors and businesses can consider.
Anyone clued up about modern day investment will likely already know that the contemporary art market is booming. The sometimes elitist nature of art criticism can make the art world seem daunting. Knowing what will be likely to flourish and what will fluke isn’t easy to determine in any field of investment, but art trends can be particularly unpredictable. It’s far from an easy market to break into, in other words, but investors can make millions of dollars investing in artworks which drastically increase in value between just a couple of years to a couple of decades. More frequently, however, investors are choosing to focus on the artist as opposed to single works of art.
Artists need high quality material with which to create their art pieces. They also need exposure, such as by having their art installed in popular galleries. They need to build contacts and undergo any training or study required to further their craft. Typically, it has been the art galleries that have invested in promising individual artists, however the trend for private and art-savvy individuals to identify emerging artists, and personally fund them, is becoming increasingly common. Often, artists find it disheartening to deal with the financial and promotional aspect of their work, and it therefore suits them to find someone who will take those responsibilities of their hands in return for some of the sold art’s profit. If you know anything about art, or are at least willing to learn about the art market, then consider investing in the next Basquiat or Hesse.
Backing Poker Players
The so-called ‘staking’ investment trend has gained increasing popularity in recent years. As poker has become a game based on skillful strategy as much as luck, and with young promising players demonstrating consistent success at the card table, investors are seeing the financial potential in backing players. You cover or contribute toward the cost of a buy-in, which gives you ‘stakes’ in the player’s eventual winnings. Typically, an investor receives back the money they provided for the buy-in, plus 50% of whatever remains from the player’s winnings.
Staking can be done for players playing both live tournaments and real-money online poker games. This arrangement benefits players who could not have otherwise afforded the buy-ins to high-stake poker tournaments. Ideally, you’ll know enough about poker to develop an eye for talented players.
If you have an interest in poker, consider signing up to agencies which function as a matchmaking services between poker players and ‘stakers’. These agencies also help formalize the contract and keep track of the tournaments in which players participate as well as their winnings. Staking is an especially popular investment trend because one can invest as little as $100 at first, gradually increasing their contribution toward buy-ins as they gain more confidence in the player of their choice.
Funding a promising student through university makes most sense if you are a business looking to invest in future employees that will be well-educated and loyal. Funding can be awarded in the form of brand scholarships, which in turn can lead the student in question entering into an internship at your business and (if all goes to plan) eventually taking on full-time employment. Education in US is amongst the most expensive in the world, leaving many students in need of financial help. This arrangement is especially practical in fields which require a very specific skillset or education, or a field in which there is simply a lack of qualified personnel.
These are just a few examples of the many way you can benefit from sponsoring individual people as opposed to businesses, properties or commodities. Being able to form a personal connection with the subject of your investment is a luxury most investors forego – so think about what talented individuals can offer you when it comes to your next portfolio addition.