Joe Tsai, the Taiwanese-Canadian Alibaba founder who owns the Brooklyn Nets, was revealed to be the secret buyer of a $157 million condo at 220 Central Park South.

Back in May, an anonymous buyer paid $82.5 million for a full-floor, 5,935-square-foot unit on the 60th floor plus $75 million for another full-floor unit on the 61st floor in one of Manhattan’s most expensive towers, according to the Wall Street Journal. The mystery buyer was later revealed to be 57-year-old Tsai, who paid more than the original sale price for both apartments.

The transaction also includes an 18th-floor studio that Tsai plans to use for his staff.

Courtesy of 220 Central Park South

Tsai’s purchase is now the most expensive residential real estate sale in the country in 2021. Designed by Robert A. M. Stern and finished in 2019, 220 Central Park South routinely makes these types of real estate records — in 2019, billionaire investor Ken Griffin made the most expensive purchase of all time with the $238 million penthouse. While the building has amenities like a private Jean-Georges restaurant and private parking spots, a large part of its popularity is its prestige among the world’s elite. The building is currently 90 percent sold-out while two full-floor condo transactions are currently in contract for $49.5 million.

Born in Taipei, Tsai co-founded the Chinese online shopping behemoth alongside Jack Ma in 1999. After skyrocketing to global wealth and a net worth of nearly $11 billion, he started investing and indulging his lifelong love of basketball – in 2017, he bought a 49 percent stake in the Brooklyn Nets and took full control of the team in 2019.

Email Veronika Bondarenko

homebuying | luxury
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