NBA star, Lebron James, and his long-time business partner, Maverick Carter, have secured $100 million in funding to grow their new media company. The company, SpringHill Entertainment’s objective is to empower black and marginalized audiences.
“When we talk about storytelling, we want to be able to hit home, to hit a lot of home where they feel like they can be part of a story,” James told the magazine. “And they feel like, Oh, you know what? I can relate to that.”
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The company, which was named after an apartment complex James grew up in at Akron, Ohio, is a merger of three projects – production company, SpringHill Entertainment, digital media company Uninterrupted, and the Robot Co, a marketing agency.
In a statement, James said his team comprises more than 100 employees, “64% people of color and 40% female in an industry that averages 25%”.
“I’ve always wanted to use the platform of basketball to empower those around me. Now I’m incredibly excited about the opportunity to build a company that empowers creators, consumers, and everything it touches,” James said.
“The SpringHill company defines empowerment. You see it in the team we’ve built, the stories we tell, and the community our work will serve,” he added.
The company has already signed a TV production deal with Walt Disney Co. and is working with Netflix on a basketball-themed movie starring Adam Sandler, Bloomberg reported.
News Corp heir Elisabeth Murdoch, Guggenheim Partners chief investment officer Scott Minerd, Serena Williams, Apollo Global Management co-founder Marc Rowan, LiveNation Entertainment CEO Michael Rapino, Boston Red Sox Chairman Tom Werner and L.A. investment banker Paul Wachter are part of the board.
James will serve as chairman and Carter as CEO.