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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Sports-Focused Firm Backed by Shaq, NBA Teams, Closes $100M Fund

  • Courtside Ventures, which invests in sports, collectibles, and gaming, closed a $100 million fund.
  • The firm has now raised over $200 million total.
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

An investment firm dedicated to sports and related industries announced its biggest fund to date.

Courtside Ventures closed its third fund, securing $100 million in fresh capital and bringing its total amount raised to more than $200 million. 

Investors in the fund included:

  • Athlete legends Shaquille O’Neal and Larry Fitzgerald 
  • Ownership groups of the Atlanta Hawks, Golden State Warriors, Philadelphia 76ers, Cleveland Cavaliers, Charlotte Hornets, Atletico Madrid, DC United, and LAFC
  • Retail giant Dick’s Sporting Goods

“We had a good amount of demand to raise beyond this,” Courtside partner Deepen Parikh explained to Front Office Sports. “Our view is that [given] the stage we invest at — which really ranges from pre-seed to Series A — where we’re investing and the nature of our fund, we believe $100 million was a really good step.”

Courtside’s previous investments include The Athletic, gaming livestream platform Beam, StockX, and 100 Thieves. It has already begun investing with its third fund, including a stake in Mojo, an athlete “stock market” backed by Alex Rodriguez and Marc Lore.

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More Than a Check

“A lot of our LPs are very strategic in nature,” said Parikh, who added that the relationships Courtside establishes can catalyze client relationships between its portfolio companies. 

Courtside has also found new investment opportunities through the family offices of teams that invest in its funds. Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert invested in Courtside’s first fund, and more owners have joined in since.

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