Nik Caner-Medley has no intention of becoming one of those professional athletes who retire and then wonder where all the money went.

Caner-Medley, the 32-year-old power forward from Deering High School who has been playing professional basketball in Europe, Asia and the Middle East, has begun quietly building a future career for himself in Portland as a real estate entrepreneur.

In early 2014, he founded Medley Properties with friend Josh Corbeau to buy and manage residential and commercial real estate. The company’s holdings include the Edge Bar property at 61 Main St. in Biddeford.

Now, Caner-Medley is expanding the scope of his existing business and opening a new one. Medley Properties recently began development of a co-working, meeting and event space called Cloudport in the former CycleMania location at 59 Federal St. in Portland.

The athlete said his goal is to put the millions of dollars he has earned to good use.

“I want to be smart with my money and invest it in my community,” he said. “That’s part of what Cloudport is about.”


Caner-Medley has been playing pro basketball for over a decade, and he is not planning to retire anytime soon. He recently finished a two-year, $2 million contract with BC Astana of the VTB United League. Astana is the capital of Kazakhstan.

As of July, he will again be a free agent. Caner-Medley said his plan is to sign with a European team that has championship potential and plays in a city with a good quality of life.

“There won’t be a return to Kazakhstan next year,” he said. “There’s not a whole lot going on in Kazakhstan.”

Still, Caner-Medley said he does not regret his decision to play in Astana. In addition to the money he earned, that’s where he found the inspiration for Cloudport.

Caner-Medley recalled a day when his Wi-Fi service at home wasn’t working, so he went off in search of an Internet café. He happened upon the mother of all Internet cafés – a 30,000-square-foot establishment that had Internet and business services, a cafe, restaurant, theater and spaces for parties and meetings.

“I saw this vision of where you could have a one-stop shop,” he said.


Cloudport won’t be as large or multifaceted as the Kazakh business, but Caner-Medley said it will offer a wide variety of amenities to its members, including a kitchen, private shower, high-end furniture and a concierge service.

“We’ll also have local beers on tap that will be complimentary,” he said.

Co-working spaces are not new to the Portland area. More than a half-dozen such facilities have opened since 2011, including Think Tank, Peloton Labs and Casco Bay Technology Hub, which has since closed.

Co-working spaces are growing in popularity because they solve a common problem for small start-ups and independent contractors: They offer all the basic amenities of a corporate office at a much lower cost.

Pricing and services vary, but in general, co-working spaces provide professional-looking offices where clients, often referred to as members, can stop in anytime to use an office, desk or cubicle, Internet service, Wi-Fi, printer, conference room or other facilities. Most co-working spaces offer several tiers of service, ranging from limited use of a shared workspace to 24-hour use of a dedicated office within the facility.

Cloudport memberships will start at $99 a month for preopening sales and then increase to $125 a month for the most basic level, Caner-Medley said. Private office memberships will start at $500 a month.



Caner-Medley said his goal is not to make Cloudport an elitist or exclusionary place. He plans to open up its meeting spaces for free to community groups that need a place to put on their events.

When the 6,600-square-foot business opens in July, Caner-Medley said he will personally take on the role of concierge until he has to leave Maine for the next basketball season. Corbeau, his business partner, will handle day-to-day operations.

“I want to be hands-on when this place opens,” Caner-Medley said. “I want to be here.”

Paul Greene, a sports attorney and former TV sportscaster in Portland, said money management is a well-known problem among pro athletes, with many declaring bankruptcy within a few years after retirement.

However, Greene noted that the tendency to overspend on luxury items is a societal issue that is hardly limited to the world of professional sports.


He said athletes such as Caner-Medley who receive positive guidance and values from those around them are the ones most likely to maintain their wealth.

“Nik’s definitely showing a level of responsibility in the way he’s doing things,” Greene said.

Caner-Medley said that being from Maine, he feels less pressure to spend money on flashy symbols of status and wealth than some of his fellow teammates. When he comes home to Portland, his friends and family members remind him to be frugal.

“You don’t need to have five cars, you don’t need to have three houses, you don’t need to have 20 diamond chains,” Caner-Medley said. “I want to do good work. If I end up broke because I’ve done what I think are good things for the community, I’ll still be able to look in the mirror and feel good about it.”

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