Kenny G talks about his investment in Starbucks in the mid 1980s [HERE]. This is a perfect example of betting on the jockey very early, albeit with a huge amount of luck.
Kenny does admit his luck, “I’d say I’m more lucky than smart. Not lucky that Starbucks became successful, but lucky that I decided to invest.”
Kenny G met Howard after a recommendation from his uncle, one of the first investors in Starbucks.
It’s interesting that if you are familiar with the story of the company, Starbucks was well known to those in Seattle at the time. They were new but dominating their niche. Kenny said, “They had a reputation for the best coffee [in town].”
The reason why Kenny G invested in Starbucks so early, and held on for so long? He said, “I didn’t really know much about coffee, but he’s [Howard Schultz] such a charismatic guy, he’s so smart and so passionate. I said whatever you are doing I want to be a part of. So I invested more in him being such a dynamic guy.”
I don’t remember the article, but Kenny G admitted that even though he’s sold more than 75 million albums, he made significantly more money investing in Starbucks.