Magic Johnson Joins Detroit Venture Partners to Launch Tech Companies

July 22, 2011

1:00 pm

Lansing, Michigan native and NBA Hall of Famer Magic Johnson announced yesterday that he is joining Detroit Venture Partners (DVP) as a general partner.  He will also be investing millions of dollars into the fund itself.

If you’re not familiar with them, DVP is a Detroit-based venture capital firm that invests in seed and early-stage technology companies, most of which are located in downtown Detroit. The firm was launched in 2010 by entrepreneurs Josh Linkner, Founder & Chairman of ePrize; Dan Gilbert, Founder & Chairman of Quicken Loans and Majority Owner of the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers; and Brian Hermelin, Founder & Chairman of the private equity firm Rockbridge Growth Equity.

In a statement, Magic Johnson said,

I am investing in Detroit Venture Partners and the City of Detroit because I want to have a positive impact on the biggest downtown in my home state. I believe strongly in the Detroit 2.0 movement and creating opportunities to help people get back to work.

DVP has already invested in six of the 12 companies it expects to fund this year, including:

  • FLUD: a news-reader application for iPad, iPhone, and Android devices, which we just covered
  • Hired My Way: they connect job seekers and employers
  • Detroit Labs: app developers for Web, iOS, and Android

With so many accomplished people working towards a bright future for Detroit, it will be interesting to see if they can turn around the city’s fortunes.  Do you think they’ll succeed?  We’d love to hear your views, so be sure to leave a comment below!

You can read the full press release here.

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Monika Jansen is a writer and editor who is happiest pounding out blog posts, newsletters, website content, and other materials. Follow her at: @monikacjansen

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