Earvin ‘Magic’ Johnson Joins Detroit VC Firm To Invest In Tech Startups

NBA legend Earvin ‘Magic’ Johnson this morning announced that he is joining and investing in Detroit Venture Partners, a VC firm that invests in seed and early-stage technology companies primarily located in the heart of downtown Detroit, as its fourth general partner.

The Hall of Fame basketball star will be working with the founders of the firm, namely Quicken Loans founder (and Cleveland Cavaliers owner) Dan Gilbert, ePrize founder Josh Linkner and investor Brian Hermelin, and invest ‘millions of dollars’ in the fund, according to the PR.

Detroit Venture Partners was established in 2010 and has made investments in startups like Are You A Human, FLUD News, Stylecaster and Sociocast. The fund will invest exclusively in digital media, mobile app development, cloud computing, e-commerce and social networking companies.

Magic, who played basketball for Michigan State University before being drafted by the LA Lakers, in a statement says he believes strongly in the “Detroit 2.0 movement”.

I’m not entirely sure what that means, but according to the LA Times, Johnson is referring to the initiative launched by Dan Gilbert in which he relocated Quicken Loans and its 1,700 workers out of the Detroit suburbs.

Detroit Venture Partners, along with some of its portfolio companies, will be located in Gilbert’s downtown Detroit Madison Theatre Building, which is currently being transformed into an coworking / incubator hub where tech companies can work together.

(Image via Flickr user Edilyn Tsai, used with permission)