Atlanta rapper and actor Clifford Joseph ‘T.I.’ Harris, Jr. has launched Tech Cypha, a new investment syndicate focused on early, growth and late-stage startups, with an inaugural investment in Culture Genesis, a digital gaming studio targeting urban and multicultural audiences.
The syndicate will provide startups with capital, marketing expertise and brand amplification through partnerships with macro influencers, according to the company.
T.I. and his business partner Jason Geter have been investing in tech companies for years. According to Tech Crunch, the pair first invested in a website called Streetcred.com over a decade ago, a deal that ultimately fell through. Now, the team is looking to leverage the right demographic by investing in the growing tech scene in Atlanta.
“Being in the city of Atlanta and with Georgia Tech producing so much talent, and coming from us being within the hip-hop culture which is always influencing and promoting things, we saw an opportunity,” Geter told Tech Crunch. “In the past, we were always looking through the glass window and looking at ways we can participate earlier. And that’s by coming together to pool our resources so we can invest more.”
PitchBook and the National Venture Capital Association report that Atlanta area startups raised $626.85 million across 35 venture capital deals in the fourth quarter of 2018. This is a significant increase from the $72.62 million raised from 22 deals in Q4 of 2017.