Kevin Durant Joins the Investment Game | Disrupt SF 2017 | Summary and Q&A

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September 19, 2017
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Kevin Durant Joins the Investment Game | Disrupt SF 2017

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Summary

In this interview, Kevin Durant and his business partner Rich Kleiman discuss various topics, including Durant's use of social media, their investment strategy, their partnership, and Durant's involvement in the tech world. They also touch on important issues such as equality and inclusiveness in the tech industry.

Questions & Answers

Q: What is Durant's response to accusations of creating fake social media accounts?

Durant admits to having another Instagram account for friends and family but denies using it to clap back at anyone. He explains that he used Twitter to engage with fans but acknowledges that he went too far in some instances. He expresses regret for mentioning his former coach and apologizes for his actions.

Q: Why are many pro athletes investing in startups and becoming tech investors?

Durant believes that tech is a significant and impactful industry that can create change. He sees it as an opportunity to think beyond basketball and make a difference in people's lives. He encourages athletes and anyone who dreams of entering the tech world to pursue their goals.

Q: What is the strategy and size of Durant's investment company, the Durant Company?

Durant clarifies that they don't consider it a fund but rather a way to allocate a portion of their finances for early-stage private equity investments. They started by focusing on angel investing based on concepts and teams they connected with. As they gained experience, they expanded to Series A investments with a team to help with due diligence. They rely on their instincts and gut feeling when making investment decisions.

Q: Is the team that helps with due diligence also part of the Durant Company?

The team consists of financial and legal analysts as well as friends and colleagues. They have built the necessary infrastructure to analyze deals and rely on their expertise when evaluating investments.

Q: What percentage of their wealth do Durant and Kleiman risk in their investments?

The investments range from $50,000 to $2 million, and they allocate a small percentage of their net worth to these deals over the course of a year. They are aware of the risks associated with startups and understand the need to support companies in subsequent funding rounds.

Q: How do Durant and Kleiman decide on new investment opportunities?

Kleiman brings deals to the table and consults with Durant, taking into account Durant's passions, interests, and the potential impact. They trust each other's instincts and have open discussions to reach agreements.

Q: How did Durant and Kleiman meet and become partners?

They met through a mutual friend when Durant was 18 and Kleiman was 30. Despite not living in the same city, they stayed in touch, and Durant trusted Kleiman's judgment. When the opportunity to work together in sports arose, Durant gave Kleiman a chance based on their unique friendship. Their partnership felt natural, and they leverage their rapport in the investing world as well.

Q: Why did Durant start 35 Media and distribute content through YouTube?

Durant wanted to have control over his own story and share more about who he is and what he loves. 35 Media started as a YouTube page, and the positive response they received led them to build it into a media company. They seek to continue being in the tech world and make a positive impact.

Q: How did Durant's brand change when he moved to the Golden State Warriors?

Durant mentions that critics villainized him after joining the Warriors, but he doesn't let that affect him. He focuses on being the best teammate he can be and improving himself both on and off the court. He sees his journey as a continuous growth process.

Q: Do Durant and Kleiman have a policy to invest in female founders or people of color?

They don't have a policy, but they are open and interested in working with diverse founders. They believe in the ability of entrepreneurs from different backgrounds and hope to build a more diverse portfolio in the future.

Q: What are Durant's thoughts on the ongoing revolution of equality and inclusiveness in the tech industry?

Durant sees it as a positive direction and believes that great ideas can come from anyone, regardless of their color or beliefs. He advocates for listening to these ideas and supporting individuals who want to make a difference.

Q: Would Durant prefer AI-powered referees in basketball?

Durant prefers human judgment in refereeing, as he appreciates their ability to call the game according to their interpretation. He jokes that with AI-powered referees, every touch foul would be called, but he would also get away with fewer infractions.

Takeaways

Durant's interview touches on various aspects of his life, including his use of social media, his investment strategy, and his perspective on important issues in the tech industry. He acknowledges his past actions on social media, expresses regret, and emphasizes the importance of engaging with fans. Durant and Kleiman's investment strategy involves allocating a small percentage of their net worth to startup investments. They rely on their instincts and a team of analysts to evaluate opportunities. The interview also highlights their friendship and partnership, which started when they were introduced through a mutual friend. Durant's involvement in the tech world and his creation of 35 Media on YouTube reflect his desire for control and the opportunity to share his story. Finally, Durant and Kleiman are open to working with diverse founders and believe in supporting individuals who want to bring about positive change.

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