Kevin Hart’s Hartbeat Ventures takes its first outside investment from J.P. Morgan • TechCrunch
Hartbeat Ventures Company Takes Comedian and entrepreneur Kevin Hart announced today at TechCrunch Disrupt, his first institutional investment from JP Morgan. The announcement was made by Michael Elangian, President of Digital Investment Banking and Digital Markets for JP Morgan, President of Hartbeat Ventures and Co-Founder Robert Roman.
Hartbeat Ventures, an early stage venture capital firm with a focus on lifestyle, media and technology, is focused on inclusion—financial inclusion specifically. A portion of the new fund will be allocated to support minorities and underrepresented institutions.
Hart said he has had some difficulties entering the investing world and noted that there is a learning curve.
“I had to learn why investing was so good,” Hart said. “To my understanding, the investment world — well, it was connected to the scam space. You’re trying to scam me out of my money. I don’t trust you. I don’t give anyone my money so they can run away and do whatever they want — that was my challenge. It was the biggest A learning curve for me is understanding that investing has a timeline attached to it and because I invested today, does that mean I’ll get anything tomorrow?”
Hart touched on how he learned that it is important to be confident when investing and to understand the world of growth. He noted that his biggest challenge is understanding that investments have a timeline and that it is important to know how the economy works and how to make your money work for you.
He also said that he trusts his team to do what is best for the company and that he has joined forces with people who have invested successfully.
“This is not the Kevin Hart machine that Kevin Hart is standing in front of and I said it had to happen and there was no other way,” Hart said. “This is a table. This is a table where we sit and talk, think and come up with the best ideas possible. This is something I’ve done very well over the years. I sided with the people who did it right and that’s how I’ve learned.”
As for the investment from JPMorgan, Elangian said the investment represents the maximum allocation the company has made through Project Spark, the company’s initiative that invests capital in diversified, women-led projects.
“We created an initiative a few years ago called Project Spark, which is how we can give diversified venture capitalists and first-time fund managers to change that equation,” Elangian said on stage. “Over the past few years, we’ve put $90 million into 23 funds to raise more than $900 million in capital. Through this project and by meeting with Kevin’s team, we’re very excited because, as of yesterday, we just closed, and JP Morgan Now the first investor in Hartbeat Ventures, the new fund, and we’re very excited about the things they can do together.”
Roman also announced that he has invested personal capital in Hartbeat Ventures but did not disclose the amount.
Hartbeat Ventures has already invested in a number of companies, including electrolyte beverage brand BrightFox, avatar platform Ready Player Me, sustainable bottled water brand Path, massage therapy device Therabody, sustainable packaging brand Cleancut, car rental platform Rodo and food ordering platform. Social Snackpass.