Hoping to Strike Off-Court Gold, Carmelo Anthony Launches a VC Firm
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It's been a busy couple weeks for Carmelo Anthony. Last Sunday, the pro-basketball player re-signed with the New York Knicks, in a contract worth over $122 million. Now, the seven-time NBA All Star is looking to find financial success off the court.
Like NBA players Steve Nash and Amar'e Stoudemire before him, Anthony is getting into the venture capital game. In partnership with former NBC president and executive Stuart Goldfarb, the basketball star has founded M7 Tech Partners, a seed-stage investment firm, The Wall Street Journal reported. (The name derives from Anthony's nickname 'Melo' combined with his number seven jersey).
M7 Tech Partners, which will invest in consumer internet, opportunistic technology and early stage digital media startups, has already made its first investment in Hullabalu, a children's media company that creates interactive storytelling apps. (Gary Vaynerchuck and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian are already investors.)
Apparently, Goldfarb and Anthony are long-time family friends. “We have complementary strengths and a very close, 50/50 partnership…I have more time to do the leg work of scoping out potential deals for us," Goldfarb told the Journal, adding "‘Melo has incredible business instincts and a great record when it comes to product design, social media and business development."
As for M7 Tech Partner's future investments? “I particularly have my eye on companies that are involved with wearable technology and connected devices," Anthony said in a statement. "These will be huge areas for the future."
With his brand new investment firm, Anthony joins a long and varied list of athletes who have moonlighted as entrepreneurs, to varying degrees of success. Some have made the transition deftly (Steve Nash, Peyton Manning) while others have struggled, sometimes disastrously (John Elway, Vince McMahon).