Durant-led Boardroom, MLB announce strategic partnership

May 8th, 2024

When MLB and the Kevin Durant-led sports and entertainment company Boardroom linked up in Arizona in February, it wasn’t just a one-off event. It was the genesis of a partnership that’s here to stay.

Following a successful “Dinner in the Desert” a few months ago during Spring Training, MLB and Boardroom have announced that they will be entering a strategic partnership. In this arrangement, MLB players will be brought together with various athletes, executives, and entertainers for a curated event series with storytelling and amplification across Boardroom’s platform.

Boardroom was founded by Durant and his agent, Rich Kleiman, in 2019. According to the company’s website, it is a sports, media and entertainment brand with a media arm that features premium video/audio, editorial, daily and weekly newsletters meant to showcase how athletes, executives, musicians and creators are moving the business world forward. The company spawned from a series called “The Boardroom” that streamed on ESPN+ in 2019 and 2020.

Among others, Boardroom currently features investments in the reigning NWSL champions, Gotham FC, MLS’ Philadelphia Union and a Major League Pickleball team called the Brooklyn Aces.

As for the “Dinner in the Desert” itself, the event was packed with stars inside and outside the baseball world. Besides the obvious pair of Durant and Kleiman, other notable attendees included active MLB stars Mookie Betts, Julio Rodríguez, Corbin Carroll, Tyler Glasnow, Dansby Swanson, Hunter Greene and Willy Adames; baseball legends CC Sabathia, Ryan Howard and Jimmy Rollins; MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred; and Phoenix-area sports stars Devin Booker (Phoenix Suns) and Kyler Murray (Arizona Cardinals).

“[It’s a] great opportunity for our players that are here to make connections and talk about what they want to do in the next phase of their lives,” Manfred said at the event.

The joint events between MLB and Boardroom going forward will be designed for networking and long-term relationship building for players, and they will be centered around key moments in the MLB season calendar as part of the league’s player marketing efforts.

“Honestly I just love connecting with people, especially some familiar faces,” Swanson said at the February event. “Just being able to chat away from the field is always nice, so we’re just enjoying a nice lovely night in Arizona.”

The partnership will also be supported by Boardroom’s social amplification and content creation. And if the initial test run was any indication, this collaboration could be the start of something special for all parties involved.

“So many great people here, so many bright, brilliant minds that are pushing the game forward,” Durant said in February. “It’s just good to be in the mix and be able to talk to greatness, you know. It’s an exciting time right now for Boardroom.”