Jay Z has had an ear for hits in music, now the question is whether he can do the same in tech.
“Roc Nation, which Jay Z founded along with Jay Brown in 2008, is launching a ‘startup platform’ called Arrive to invest in early-stage startups and help those companies build their brands,” reports Business Insider.
Jay Z, whose government name is Shawn Carter, grew up in the Marcy Houses, a housing project in Bedford-Stuyvesant in the 1980s and ’90s. Carter helped in lobbying efforts and public relations to get the Barclays Center built in Downtown Brooklyn.
His old neighborhood has changed since his childhood. Just blocks from the Marcy Houses, in what used to be a dangerous area, there are now one-bedroom apartments in renovated factories going for $3,000/month. In fact, the factory next to the Marcy Houses, which used to house the Pfizer Corporation before it moved out, has now been reborn as a hub for startups. The building serves as the headquarters for food startup coworking space FoodWorks, dev bootcamp Per Scholas, body sensor startup Notch and indoor farm Verticulture.
Carter is not new to startup investing. He’s invested in at least six young companies, including in Uber’s Series B round, back in 2011. Uber’s valuation coming out of that round was $300 million. It’s now believed to be valued at $62.5 billion, so that, uh, has done well.
Business Insider reports that “New York-based venture capital firm Primary Venture Partners will be serving as a venture advisor to the fund and GlassBridge Asset Management will be providing ‘institutional and operational support.'”
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