OneTeam Partners and Will Ventures will bring sports, technology, and industry-leading expertise together to energize portfolio companies.
Will Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm, and OneTeam Partners, a marketing organization that helps thousands of athletes maximize the value of their name, image, and likeness rights, announced a game-changing collaboration Tuesday aimed at generating a whole new model for value creation in the venture capital industry.
Both organizations will work together to find companies that can especially benefit from dual access to athletes and infrastructure and expertise in the world of group licensing as part of this first-of-its-kind pact.
“We’re fortunate to work across a diverse set of world-class athletes. And by partnering with Will Ventures, we’re excited to help integrate the unique attributes of influential athletes early on in the marketing and growth strategies of their portfolio companies to deliver a whole new level of value,” said Ahmad Nassar, CEO of OneTeam in an official release.
The research-driven Will Ventures invests across the consumer, health, media, and gaming industries. So far, the firm has made 19 investments into companies like Tempus Ex, Future, Just Women’s Sports, and Looped.
OneTeam launched in 2019 and is a joint venture between the NFLPA (National Football League Player’s Association), MLBPA (Major League Baseball Players Association), and RedBird Capital Partners. Outside of the NFLPA and the MLBPA, OneTeam represents the interests of the MLSPA, the US Women’s National Team PA, the WNBPA, and the US Rugby PA.
Early-stage startups will realize the benefits of athlete collaboration, but the collaboration between the two organizations doesn’t end there. They’ll additionally curate prospective business opportunities in venture capital and provide both educational materials and access to athletes across OneTeam’s vast talent network.
“One of the reasons we’re so excited about this partnership is because it brings together our research and expertise in the space with a differentiator network [and] that could be a really strong value add for some of these markets,” said Brian Reilly, co-founder and managing partner of Will Ventures. “There’s obviously so much complimentary value between the two of us, so it just made perfect sense to partner up and do this together.”
“Working with athletes can come in so many different forms [and] OneTeam understands that there is immense value to be tapped into and uncover by working with companies in early stages,” said Reilly’s co-founder, former NFL player Isaiah Kacyvenski. “The core to our business is working early with amazing entrepreneurs into large markets and not only helping them execute, but adding value along the way. OneTeam really allows us to do all of that.”
Kacyvenski played in the NFL for eight years with the Seattle Seahawks, St. Louis/Los Angeles Rams, and Oakland/Las Vegas Raiders. He said that Will Ventures will continue to invest in new companies by fully utilizing the connections and capabilities that come with being directly linked with OneTeam Partners, opening up new roads for the business.