The NBA’s involvement in esports grew a little more this week as it was announced that Steph Curry invested in TSM’s parent company, Swift. Fellow Golden State Warrior Andre Iguodala was also among the team of investors that raised $37 million in Series A funding for the esports organization.
Leading the way was Bessemer Venture Partners, who contributed $25 million by themselves. Bessemer is based in the Bay Area and is no stranger to the esports industry. The venture capital firm marks Twitch as one of its most successful investments. Bessemer first invested was Twitch in 2012, shortly after the company rebranded from JustinTV.
Curry and Iguodala aren’t the only sports stars to invest in TSM. Steve Simon, Director of the Indiana Pacers Basketball Corporation, and former NFL star Steve Young were also among those who invested. Other notable investors include Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang and Twitch Chief Strategy Officer Colin Carrie.
The NBA Loves Esports
— Stephen Curry (@StephenCurry30) July 24, 2018
The relationship between the NBA and esports was already close before the additions of Curry and Iguodala. The Cleveland Cavaliers, Houston Rockets and Golden State Warriors all have affiliate teams in the NA LCS. And then, of course, there’s Echo Fox, one of the most prominent teams in all of esports. They’re partially owned by former NBA all-star Rick Fox and Kevin Durant is one of the team’s many investors.
Nothing validates esports more than receiving investments from players of more traditional sports. Steph Curry investing in TSM is just further proof that esports are carving out their spot alongside the other great competitions of today.