Kim Kardashian launched a private equity firm

Kim Kardashian launched a private equity firm

Kim Kardashian is launching a private equity firm to acquire partnerships in fast-growing media and consumer companies, aiming to turn her celebrity and influence with 329 million Instagram followers into financial returns.

The firm, SKKY Partners, is a collaboration between the reality TV star-turned-business mogul and Jay Sammons, a former Carlyle Group executive who has invested in celebrity-backed ventures.

This reflects the growing financial sophistication of a generation of entertainers, who have welcomed fragmented audiences and the emergence of online platforms as an opportunity to monetize their personal brands without valuing the legacy media companies that once served as gatekeepers.

Sammons pioneered that strategy. At Carlyle, he took a multibillion-dollar private equity firm into the unfamiliar world of show business, reaping stellar returns from star-studded deals including an investment in headphone maker Beats by Dre.

But his 2019 acquisition of a stake in Big Machine Records sparked controversy when one of the label’s biggest stars, Taylor Swift, complained that the deal gave control of the master recordings of her six multi-platinum albums to a man she thought was hers. Nemesis, music executive Scooter Braun.

Sammons’ latest venture connects him to a family that has provided a steady stream of celebrity drama since rising to fame in 2007 with the hit reality TV show Keeping Up With the Kardashians.

Since then, he has proven adept at monetizing his ability to add celebrity flare to consumer brands such as shapewear label Skims and KKW, a make-up brand in which cosmetics maker Coty invested in a $1bn valuation in 2020.

SKKY announced its arrival in a tweet, noting that “its target sectors include consumer products, digital and ecommerce, consumer media, hospitality and luxury”. The firm provided few other details and did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

No funds have yet been raised to make the planned investment, according to the Wall Street Journal, which reported that Kardashian’s mother, Kris Jenner, will also be a partner.

But other companies have tested institutional demand for celebrity-endorsed investments focused on the consumer sector, with some success.

Marcy Venture Partners, the firm co-founded by rapper Jay-Z, began raising money last year for another institutional fund targeting $200mn, securities filings show.

Another celebrity-backed outfit, Casa Verde Capital, has invested in products ranging from fintech platforms to cannabis-based snacks. The firm’s website emphasizes its relationship with rapper Snoop Dogg, whom it describes as “a pioneering icon who paved the way in pop culture” and “a key member”. . . The team responsible for creating the identity of the firm”.

Sneha Mali

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