For Oracle CEO, yachting and basketball go together

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Oracle Corp. chief executive Larry Ellison, who also founded Oracle Team USA, the recent winner of the America’s Cup, likes to mix his boats with basketball.

Ellison has had basketball courts on at least two of his yachts, Tom Ehman, who handles America’s Cup matters for Ellison, told the Wall Street Journal.

Ellison liked to relax by shooting hoops on these courts, and he has had someone in a powerboat follow the yacht to retrieve balls that go overboard, Ehman said.

The Oracle chief and entertainment mogul David Geffen are partnering with Oprah Winfrey in an effort to buy the National Basketball Association’s Los Angeles Clippers.

“Larry Ellison, Oprah and me … yes, we are partnering in hopes of buying the Clippers,” Geffen told the paper in an email on Wednesday.

It’s not the first partnership for Geffen and Ellison. The pair also have co-owned Rising Sun, a 450-foot luxury yacht and one of the world’s largest.

Despite his love of basketball, Ellison’s top sporting accomplishment has come in the America’s Cup, the world’s most famous yachting competition.

His Oracle Team USA lost the contest in 2003 and 2007 before winning in 2010 and 2013.

Ellison, whose wealth exceeds $40 billion, according to the Journal, lavished his own money on those campaigns; the head of Oracle Team USA estimated last year that the sailing squad’s budget for the 2013 America’s Cup was at least $115 million, although part of that amount came from corporate sponsors.


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