Knicks Star Carmelo Anthony Launches Venture Firm

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After scoring a new contract worth over $122 million with the N.Y. Knicks, NBA star Carmelo Anthony is looking to take a different kind of shot — starting a venture capital firm.

Anthony and longtime NBC and Bertelsmann executive Stuart Goldfarb are launching their new investment firm, M7 Tech Partners, with an inaugural investment in the children’s media company Hullabalu .

Goldfarb previously served as the president and chief executive of Bertelsmann direct media group responsible for the Book-of-the-Month Club and Columbia House brands (kids, ask your parents).

Anthony, the two-time Olympic gold medalist, seven-time NBA All-Star, is hoping to leverage a social media presence of over 5 million followers and his Melo brand into success in tech investment.

The New York-based firm will invest in early stage digital media, consumer internet and opportunistic technology startups.

“For as long as I can remember, I’ve been interested in technology,” Anthony said in a statement. “We are actively looking for ventures with strong leaders creating breakthrough products that resonate with consumers. I particularly have my eye on companies that are involved with wearable technology and connected devices. These will be huge areas for the future.”

Screen Shot 2014-07-21 at 7.24.02 AMFor their first few deals, it looks like Goldfarb and Anthony will be sticking pretty close to the aforementioned playbook. The pair made their investment in Hullabalu, which had previously raised $1.8 million from a slew of prominent venture capital investors, while garnering rave reviews from cynical tech veterans.

According to a statement, as a parent himself, Anthony was particularly impressed with Hullabalu’s reinvention of storytelling (an investor base that already includes SV Angels, Gary Vaynerchuk, Gokul Rajaram, and Alexis Ohanian can’t hurt either).

As Melo takes to this new court, he follows in the footsteps of several professional athletes including teammates and former teammates like Amar’e Stoudamire and Baron Davis, and opponents like the LA Lakers’ point guard Steve Nash. Nash’s Consigliere Capital already has a sizable portfolio of tech companies including Birchbox, StellaService, and KiwiCrate.

As these star athletes enter the venture game, they may want to be advised that not every investment is a slam dunk. Cautionary tales abound (just ask Harris Barton, Joe Montana and Ronnie Lott) and Melo may find venture success as elusive as an NBA championship.