Ex-NFL player Andrew Hawkins regrets not investing early in StockX, now valued nearly $4 billion—but he did learn a lesson 

One of Andrew Hawkins’ biggest regrets as an investor was that he didn’t push harder several years ago to buy the sneaker blog that eventually became StockX, the online resale platform that has been valued at nearly $4 billion.

Hawkins, a former NFL wide receiver, connected with Josh Luber, the creator of the website, which was then called Campless, and pitched turning it into a business. But Hawkins says he got distracted by his football career and before he knew it Dan Gilbert, owner of the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers, bought it and later turned it into StockX.

“I was so upset,” Hawkins said. “But I can pick a winner, that was the ultimate lesson.”

The 37-year-old Hawkins is now the co-founder of the sports technology and gaming startup StatusPro. The company debuted its first virtual reality game, NFL Pro Era, in 2022 and recently closed a $20 million funding round led by GV, formerly known as Google Ventures. The company plans to expand into making VR games for other sports, including boxing, baseball and tennis.

Hawkins recently spoke to Bloomberg about his other investment stories and lessons learned.

When you got your first big NFL paycheck how did you spend it?

I put it away. I didn’t spend it because I was nervous there wasn’t going to be a second paycheck. So I literally went to the bank, and I thought to myself if they cut me tomorrow, now I have about $15,000 that I can get a good start at a new life.

And when did you feel like you had made it?

I don’t think I’ve ever felt like I made it. And that can be a good and a bad thing. But I do think it keeps me hungry and keeps me continuing to push to do new things.

Let’s go back to your regrets about StockX. What did Luber say to you after he sold to Gilbert?

He circled back and said: ‘Hawk you were one of the first people that came to me with this as a business. I want to let you be one of the first investors.’

I was so upset I had it taken from under me I didn’t invest.

Is there something you invested in that you wish you didn’t?

Yes. I won’t call them out specifically, but there was a media company that I invested in. It was a great proposition.

Ultimately, what I learned in that moment as an investor is you have to be very, very sure that there is a culture and ideology that aligns with the idea, that they can execute it.

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