Usher is joining JAY-Z as one of the many investors for his mother, Jonetta Patton’s, partnership with a catering startup called Hungry.
Patton has her own business, J’s Kitchen Culinary Incubator, which provides Atlanta chefs a place to work on their “craft and share resource.” But she needed help bringing in clientele. That’s where Nina Mahmoudpour, the director of operations of Hungry, comes in and forms a partnership with the singer’s mother. But she didn’t even know Patton was Usher’s mom.
“I was so excited, I called him. I said, ‘I’m telling you, this is the next big thing; you have to get on board,’” Patton said as she remembered explaining the start up to her son. “You know what? Immediately, he said, ‘Okay.’”
Other notable investors include football player, Ndamukong Suh, former Whole Foods CEO, Walter Robb and restaurateur, Tom Colicchio.
Hungry allows professional chefs in Philadelphia and Washington D.C. to apply to be outsourced to cater events. Since its founding in late 2016 by Eman and Shy Pahlevani, the company has already raised $12.5 million.
“What Uber did for people with cars, Hungry is doing for talented chefs,” Eman Pahlevani tells Forbes. “We are allowing them to set their own hours, they make their own menus … it just gives them more time to be in the kitchen doing more of what they love doing, which is cooking amazing food.”