Bobby Wagner
Source: Getty Images

Is the Next Robinhood? NFL Star Bobby Wagner Invests in $1.2 Billion Investment Platform


Sep. 17 2021, Published 3:55 a.m. ET

Bobby Wagner is much more than a star athlete, he’s an entrepreneur who has investments in a wide range of companies. Currently a player for the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks, Wagner has consistently invested in startups and companies alike. In 2020, he partnered with venture advisory company Fuse Venture Partners.

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Wagner’s most recent investment could play a part in building Robinhood’s next major competitor. At a press conference on Sep. 15, the NFL player announced that he’s partnered with investment platform, as a stakeholder.

With the partnership, Wagner will look to educate Public’s members about financial literacy and economic empowerment. He'll be an advisor for Public’s newly launched program One Team, which provides financial literacy and training to collegiate athletes. The program will help familiarize college athletes with the new NIL (name, image, likeness) rules and guidelines.

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Source: Getty Images

What's, and how can I invest with the platform?

Deemed an investing social platform, Public allows users to invest in individual stocks or ETFs. There are no fees or minimum investment required to join. The interesting twist to the platform is that all users' investment portfolios are public, meaning that anyone can see what stocks or funds you’ve invested in (though not how much you've invested, gains, or losses).

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Public emphasizes education and social networking when it comes to investing, allowing community members to chat with one another within the app. There are built-in educational features, such as investment recommendations based on personal preferences, information about each stock, and warning labels about volatile stocks.

Launched in 2019, the company has over a million users and has raised over $310 million from investors. Along with Wagner, investors include Will Smith, J.J. Watt, Tony Hawk, and The Chainsmokers. Accel and Greycroft, both early investors in Venmo, are backing Public as well. The company says it will also offer free stock to new users who are fans of Wagner but has not announced when that will be.

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Source: Getty Images

Who is Bobby Wagner, and what are his other investments?

Commonly known for his skill in the NFL, Super Bowl champion Wagner is a seven-time Pro Bowler and all-pro selection. The linebacker also had great business acumen, having graduated with a bachelor’s in business from Utah State University.

For nearly a decade, Wagner has invested in startups and other companies, such as Theragun and BodyArmor. In 2019, he negotiated his own $54 million, three-year contract with the NFL, making him the league's highest-paid middle linebacker at the time. In his venture partnership with Fuse, which involves searching for startup companies to invest in, he joins former Amazon and Microsoft executives.


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