Some of the largest companies in sports have invested in a new venture capital fund.
Sapphire Sport has raised $181 million from a group of investors that include Sinclair Broadcast Group, Adidas, Madison Square Garden Sports, Arctos Sports Partners, City Football Group, and AEG Worldwide.
The fund has also received investments from Boston Celtics part-owner Stephen Pagliuca and Philadelphia 76ers and New Jersey Devils co-owner David Blitzer.
- The fund will focus on investments in sports, media, tech, and entertainment.
- It aims to make about 18-20 different investments, mainly in California and New York.
- The fund has explored opportunities in free-to-play gaming, health, and e-commerce.
Sapphire’s latest influx of fresh capital marks the firm’s second fund, bringing its total assets under management to $300 million. The early-stage investor has a portfolio that includes sports media company Overtime, connected fitness brand Tonal, Jackpot.com, and others.
Part of a Trend
Earlier this month, New York-based investment firm Courtside Ventures closed its third fund after receiving $100 million in fresh capital, bringing its total amount raised to over $200 million.
Investors in the fund included NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal and former NFL wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald. Ownership groups of the Atlanta Hawks, Golden State Warriors, Philadelphia 76ers, and Los Angeles FC also invested, along with retail giant Dick’s Sporting Goods.
Courtside has a portfolio that includes The Athletic, 100 Thieves, Religion of Sports, and others.