Importance of taking money from the right investor reinforced with Nashville announcement

As you might imagine, the team reviews a lot of emails, newsfeeds, and websites to select the links for newsworthy items that we post daily. There was one that we came across last week from a somewhat unlikely source – Axios Nashville, the Music City outlet for the national Axios online publication.

The article spotlighted a new partnership between Ryman Hospitality and NBCUniversal where the latter and investment firm Atairos jointly purchased a 30 percent stake in Opry Entertainment Group, the entertainment arm of Ryman Hospitality. The initial equity investment was $293 million.

What’s the significance of this to start-up entrepreneurs? Mentors remind founders that all money is not necessarily the best money to accept, and a comment in the Axios Nashville article from Ryman Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Colin Reed struck us as really valuable to share to bring the point home.

“When we met with [the potential investment groups], we told them, ‘We’re not here talking about money. We’re here talking about how you, the investor coming in, can help grow our business, but also how you can help maintain the incredible integrity of this business and what it stands for, and how important it is to the city of Nashville,’ ” Reed was quoted as saying.

It’s a valuable reminder that whether you lead an iconic brand or just a start-up aspiring to become an iconic brand, the investment discussions should be a two-way, win-win conversation.

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