Serena Williams’ most notable venture capital firm investments

Tennis legend Serena Williams has announced that she will be retiring from the sport after the 2022 U.S. Open. But don’t think for a second that she’ll be slowing down. In a recent essay for Vogue magazine, Williams shared her plans to shift her focus to her family and her venture capital firm, Serena Ventures.

Williams founded Serena Ventures in 2014 after discovering that less than 2% of all venture capital money went to women during a conference hosted by J.P. Morgan Chase. Determined to make a change, she set out to create opportunities for women entrepreneurs.

“I realized that someone who looks like me needs to start writing the big checks. Sometimes like attracts like,” Williams wrote. “In order for us to change the game, more people who look like me need to be in a position of power, giving money back to themselves.”

A Portfolio of Empowerment

Serena Ventures has made impressive strides in promoting diversity and inclusion in the business world. According to its website, 53% of the companies in its investment portfolio are founded by women. Additionally, 47% have Black founders and 12% have Latino founders. The firm has invested in over 60 start-ups and recently announced that it raised an impressive $111 million.

Williams’ net worth is estimated at $260 million, according to Forbes. In addition to her entrepreneurial endeavors, she has secured brand partnerships throughout her career with renowned companies such as Gatorade, Ford, Hanesbrands, Gucci, and Nike. In fact, Nike even honored Williams by naming an office building at its global headquarters after her earlier this year.

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Notable Investments

Let’s take a closer look at some of the remarkable ventures that Serena Ventures has backed:

MasterClass

MasterClass is a streaming platform that offers members access to top-notch instructors and classes across various fields. Williams, who was one of the early investors in MasterClass, even teaches her own class on the techniques, drills, and mental skills that helped her win an impressive 23 Grand Slam singles titles.

Tonal

Tonal, a smart home gym, caught the attention of Williams and Serena Ventures, leading to a $45 million investment in series C financing in 2019. Williams later became a brand ambassador for Tonal’s “Strength Made Me” campaign, highlighting the importance of strength training in her own career.

Impossible Foods

In 2019, Serena Ventures contributed to a $300 million Series E financing round for Impossible Foods. This plant-based food company has gained popularity for its innovative approach to sustainable and delicious meat alternatives. Williams joined a notable list of individual investors, including Jay-Z, Katy Perry, and Trevor Noah.

Noom

Serena Ventures also invested in Noom, a subscription-based app that helps users track their food intake and exercise habits. Williams has been a vocal advocate for a healthy lifestyle, and she believes that Noom’s combination of modern technology and human support can lead to meaningful behavior change.

Esusu

In July 2021, Serena Ventures participated in a $10 million Series A funding round for Esusu, a financial technology company that focuses on rent reporting and data solutions for credit building. Williams praised Esusu’s mission and the potential it holds for creating financial opportunities for renters and landlords alike.

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Steps to Empowerment

Serena Williams is not only an exceptional athlete but also a trailblazing investor. Through Serena Ventures, she has dedicated herself to empowering underrepresented groups by providing capital and support. By investing in diverse entrepreneurs and groundbreaking companies, Williams is creating a more inclusive and equitable business landscape.

To learn more about Serena Ventures and Serena Williams’ journey, visit Simple Money Tips – Steps To Financial Freedom.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. The content does not constitute financial advice, nor is it a substitute for professional advice. Please consult with a qualified financial advisor before making any investment decisions.