Visiting Dignitaries

Kanye West Was at General Assembly in the Flatiron This Afternoon, Meeting with a Startup

Yeezy taught me?
 Kanye West Was at General Assembly in the Flatiron This Afternoon, Meeting with a Startup

This is what we are picturing. (Photo: Morsipr.blogspot.com)

Fresh off blowing up Mitt Romney’s tax scheme spot on the opening track of Cruel Summer, Kanye West must have decided it was safe to take his eye off the throne for a minute. We hear the rapper dropped by General Assembly’s East campus at 902 Broadway today to meet with a startup. “He was just there. He was in the classroom,” an entrepreneur stationed in the coworking space told Betabeat. “He didn’t have many people with him and was just in the front. I think he was in the classroom most of the morning.”

We first noticed the sighting via a tweet from Matthew Witheiler, principal at Flybridge Capital Partners. Alex Taub, head of biz dev at Dwolla, also tweeted about the surprise guest–and his stylish wardrobe choice. Another venture capitalist, Nikhil Kalghatgi at Softbank Ventures, used the social network to express his disbelief. Meanwhile, student developer Chevon Christie was bummed to have missed the whole thing.

Last summer, Mr. West (along with Lady Gaga) was rumored to have invested in the music startup Turntable.fm. Unlike Elevation Partners cofounder “Bono Rockstar,” Mr. West does not yet have a Crunchbase profile and the deal, as far as we know, is unconfirmed. However, he’s no stranger to Silicon Alley. Mr. West was recently seen advising Joseph Einhorn, founder of The Fancy. At the time, a company rep told Betabeat, “He gave some advice to our CEO Joe Einhorn, who looks up to Kanye the way most tech folks idolize Steve Jobs.” Earlier this year, Mr. West disclosed plans for “a new collective of creatives and developers” called DONDA. The startup, he said, will have 22 divisions aligned under the goal of making “products and experiences that people want and can afford.”

As for today’s classroom session at GA, it’s unclear whether Mr. West was teaching, learning or recruiting. If you know the identity of the mystery startup, holler at your girls: tips@betabeat.com.

Follow Nitasha Tiku on Twitter or via RSS. ntiku@observer.com