“I want to be the brand, instead of just being the face,” the tennis star and venture investor told the magazine. Serena Williams has become the first athlete to make Forbes’ annual list of the richest self-made women.
The magazine announced the tennis star’s accomplishment on Monday, one day ahead of the publication of its full 2019 list. Forbes estimates that Williams ― who will also be featured on the cover of its June 30 special issue ― has an estimated fortune of $225 million. Though she’s known as a 23-time Grand Slam champion, Williams is also a venture capitalist.
In April, she publicly announced her venture firm, Serena Ventures, which she’s been running in “secret” since 2014.
“Serena Ventures invests in companies that embrace diverse leadership, individual empowerment, creativity and opportunity,” she wrote in her Instagram announcement.
The venture firm launched a self-funded clothing line called S by Serena last May, Forbes reported.
Speaking about her venture firm, brands and investments, which include the dating app Bumble and a list of over 30 startups, according to Forbes, she told the magazine: “I want to be a part of it. I want to be in the infrastructure. I want to be the brand, instead of just being the face.”
Forbes reports that 60% of the Williams’ investments have gone to companies led by women or people of color. Williams is a global adviser to Verizon Media, HuffPost’s parent company.
Williams, who has 1-year-old daughter, Alexis Olympia, with her husband and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, recently competed in the 2019 French Open.
The 37-year-old shared words of encouragement over the weekend after losing to Sofia Kenin in the third round of the major tournament.
“Yesterday was not my day,” she wrote on Instagram. “But it’s about getting up time and time again after you fall. Here’s to a multitude of tomorrows.”
Ohanian shared a photo of Williams’ Forbes cover on Instagram on Monday. “Icon,” he wrote.
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