We now know how Kobe Bryant will spend retirement: he’s opened his own venture capital firm.
Bryant has partnered with entrepreneur Jeff Stibel to launch Bryant-Stibel. Let’s hope their choice in which businesses to fund is better than their creative naming scheme.
Stibel will do the heavy lifting, providing guidance on building companies (like a proper VC) while Bryant will make his mark with “marketing and storytelling” (like a guy with a lot of cash and no idea what to do with it).
The duo have already invested in 15 companies, and are contributing $100 million of their own money to Bryant-Stibel.
While Bryant won’t serve as a pitchman for any of the companies his firm has funded (“that’s not interesting” says Stibel), but will look for startups with an intense work ethic — just as he had while in the NBA.
He was also a dogged competitor who often brow-beat younger players on his team into submission. Let’s hope he’s a bit kinder as a VC.