If First Round had the readies and the nouse to create a company that could attract a superstar sportsperson to not only advise it on business strategy, but to invest in it too, it probably wouldn’t be sitting here scribbling this column.
But it is sitting here alas, to impart the news that crowdfunding specialist Seedrs has done just that after bagging two times grand slam winning tennis star Andy Murray for its cause. Seedrs chief executive and co-founder Jeff Lynn says that the Scot has committed to investing a “substantial amount” to some of the firm’s schemes, as well as joining its advisory board, although no further details were disclosed.
Lynn was gushing in his description of the partnership, describing Muzza as the “perfect partner for Seedrs”. He went on to tell the Guardian: “He represents the exact combination of qualities that entrepreneurs need to be successful: determination, focus, integrity and skill. We believe he can bring a different perspective into certain aspects of the early-stage business community in the health, sport and wearable technology spaces, and we look forward to his input and support.”
While the amount that Murray will actually invest remains a mystery to First Round, he does have some form for backing small businesses, after recently buying the luxury boutique Cromlix Hotel near his home town of Dunblane. He says he has always been interested in start-ups and that aiding UK start-ups appeals to him. Murray will also apparently advise on businesses related to sport and wearable technology.
At this point, First Round amuses itself by imagining a smiling, slow-motion shot of Andy Murray, resplendent with the hair and glinting teeth, (sounds more like his Other Half?), putting a benign and encouraging hand on the shoulder of some teenage tech whizz-kid or something, and telling them not to give up as help – and lots of wonga – is at hand.
But for once, First Round isn’t going to make any further facetious comments, but instead applaud both Seedrs and Murray on what seems like a great match-up. In a shocking volte face, First Round salutes the pairing and hopes that Murray’s willingness to invest in funding future winners turns out to be far more than a dead rubber.