More Than Just Brunch With Jay-Z? A Look Into Roc Nation’s Investment Strategy
Photo Credit: Kevin Mazur
If you’re looking for the venture capital (VC) arm of Roc Nation to invest in your business, you’re going to need a lot more than brunch with Jay-Z.
That’s according to Neil Sirni, the co-founder and president of Arrive — the formal name of the VC arm — who spoke extensively to TechCrunch about what his firm looks for before writing that check.
“We gravitate toward companies that we can provide meaningful assistance to but that are outside of Roc Nation’s core industries of music and traditional sports,” he said to the outlet. “To date, we’ve made 29 investments under the Arrive umbrella in everything from fintech, insurtech, edtech, health & wellness, social, and gaming. Geographically, we’re investing roughly 80% in North America, primarily the U.S., and 20% across Southeast Asia, namely, Singapore, Indonesia, and Vietnam. As a strategic investor, we never lead deals and always co-invest.”
This is the first interview that Sirni gave about the Roc Nation VC arm, and he said that he wanted to “go public” with the fund to prove to the investment community at large that they were, indeed, a serious player in the industry.
Sirni also said that when the VC fund looks at potential companies for investment purposes, they look above and beyond the financial return. Rather, the fund looks at the “strategic value that we bring to the cap table of a portfolio company.” He also added that what they look to invest in has nothing to do with Roc Nation, as a company, and has everything to do with the investment arm, as a company. (In a nutshell: no need to share your SoundCloud link.)
And in case you’re wondering: yes, Jay-Z personally approves every deal Arrive gets involved in.
“Jay-Z approves every Arrive opportunity; he, Juan Perez, and Desiree Perez are overwhelmingly supportive of Arrive and what we’re collectively trying to accomplish,” he said.