Linkin Park Launch Venture Capital Firm
Linkin Park have created their own venture capital firm. The company launched in May and goes by the name Machine Shop Ventures. In an article published in the Harvard Business Review and written by executive vice president of Machine Shop, Kiel Berry, he talks about why Linkin Park decided to form this company that’s focused on “connecting people and innovation through tech and design.”
In the article Mike Shinoda talks about the purpose of Machine Shop, “Our goal was to build an internal team of diverse talent to support the non-traditional endeavors the band plans to pursue in the coming years.” He also told Mashable, that they put in a lot of groundwork before creating this company. “We did a lot of homework so far," explains Shinoda. "We are trying to make sure that we do our due diligence and we understand the landscape to the best of our ability.” Some of the due diligence included studying Trent Reznor’s creative partnership with Beats Music, looking at rapper Jay Z’s business endeavors and teaming up with Harvard business experts.
While their venture capital firm launched in mid-May, in his article Berry says that the idea for the company began in 1999 in Linkin Park drummer Rob Bourdon’s home. It was there that the band, still a fairly unknown group, started to create their online community and fan club. Flash forward to today and Berry says, “Our venture capital firm… will focus on investing in early-to-growth-stage consumer-focused companies that align with the band’s ethos of connecting people and innovation through tech and design… So far we’ve invested in Lyft, Shyp, Robinhood, and Blue Bottle Coffee to name a few.”
And listen up fans, Linkin Park’s new business mindset may have an affect on their music. Berry gives an example of how, going forward, the band will be both venture capitalists and musicians. “To be clear, we are still in the music business, but creating and selling music now plays more of a supporting role in our overall business mix. As we get ready to headline a five-city stadium tour of China this summer, we are also planning to meet with technology companies, consumer brands, and venture capital firms to discuss opportunities for partnership. Of course we’ll play the shows and meet with fans, as we’ve always done. But along with continuing to make great music, today’s Linkin Park is now better positioned to operate in the ever-evolving cultural and business landscape.”
Shinoda went so far as to say he sometimes feels more comfortable within the tech community, than the music community. "We just want to deepen our connection with the tech community," Shinoda told Mashable. "I feel like I have a closer kinship at a tech conference to the people I’m speaking with and hanging with than a music conference. I have much more in common."
Linkin Park are headlining the Loudwire Music Festival this Saturday (6/27) in Grand Junction, Colo. Weezer and Rob Zombie are also headliners with acts like A Day to Remember, Halestorm and Theory of a Deadman are performing during the three-day festival, as well. Head here for more information.
Loudwire Music Festival 2015 Preview