A New York-based investment firm is partnering with one of the region’s most revered sports franchises, as fintech company Yieldstreet has inked a multi-year deal with the New York Giants.
The terms were not disclosed, but the agreement makes the startup the team’s official alternative investment platform.
Yieldstreet CEO Milind Mehere says the company spoke with other sports organizations but ultimately felt it made most sense to align with the Giants, one of the league’s cornerstone franchises.
“The [Giants] being a hometown team and us being based in New York City—with a lot of our investor and consumer base in the area—we felt this was a great opportunity for us,” Mehere told Sportico.
Yieldstreet, which raised $100 million in its last funding round, will now have access to team logos and marks, which will be leveraged to highlight ways to create wealth. Under the agreement, current and former Giants players are also expected to join the Yieldstreet podcast (The Yield) to discuss their business ventures and investment strategies.
The company aims to promote financial literacy and bolster team philanthropic efforts. For every field goal scored, the company says it will donate to the Giants Foundation, the franchise’s charitable arm.
Yieldstreet president Michael Weisz said earlier this year that the focus behind the digital investing platform was to become a household name through consumer acquisition. The Giants deal should boost brand awareness and drive more engagement, especially locally. The extra attention could be timely as the Midtown-based company weighs going public via SPAC.
“We have a pretty large beneficiary in New York, and [as we] scale the company going into 2022, we really wanted to take advantage of the NFL being such a big dominant brand in all of sports, but especially in big markets like New York,” Mehere said.
This is likely just the beginning of Yieldstreet’s investment with pro sports teams, as Mehere said he hopes to eventually partner with other like-minded franchises. The company already has ambassador deals with athletes including the Washington Wizards’ Spencer Dinwiddie and businessman-turned-boxer Joe Fournier.
While this is the NFL’s first alternative investment platform deal, the league has long been interested in spending with nontraditional businesses, as shown by the creation of its venture capital arm (32 Equity). NFL senior vice president Kevin LaForce, who heads 32 Equity, told Sportico earlier this year that the league wants to invest in companies and digital platforms that drive innovation and benefit fans.
Yieldstreet, which received early backing from billionaire George Soros, has raised more than $275 million since its inception in 2015 and says it has funded over $1.9 billion on its platform. Last week, the company launched a new venture capital platform geared to benefit retail investors.