The BoF Podcast: Serena Williams on Being a Modern Entrepreneur | Podcasts

Imran Amed and Serena Williams onstage at BoF West in California | Source: Getty Images for The Business Of Fashion

LOS ANGELES, United States —  She has 23 grand-slam titles under her belt and is one of the world’s biggest names in sports, but as an entrepreneur, Serena Williams is only just getting started. Not only is Williams the founder and chief executive of her own fashion and lifestyle brand, she sits on the boards of Survey Monkey and Poshmark and has headed up her own venture capital firm to primarily invest in women- and PoC-owned businesses.

Serena Ventures, which has has been operating under the radar since 2014, now supports some 30-plus businesses including feminine hygiene brand Lola and online learning platform, Masterclass. Much like her style of tennis-playing, she wanted to come out “with a bang” by developing her portfolio before announcing the company.

Williams’ clothing line, S by Serena, has also been a long time — arguably a lifetime — in the making. From adapting her on-court “mental toughness” to taking inspiration from the likes of DTC brands Casper and Glossier, to navigating her existing sportswear deal with Nike, S has become a fully built brand with plans to expand into other lifestyle verticals, including an imminent jewellery line.

As for plans for life after tennis, says Williams, “let’s not talk about that!”

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rZNzU7IjWfQ?feature=oembed]

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