Ivan Jose Cloyd is known to people in the District as a television actor but he recently took on another occupation, entrepreneur, with the advice of famous rapper Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson.
In January, the Ward 8 Congress Heights neighborhood resident launched Quadrant, a firm that seeks to stream District activities and the stories of Washingtonians, in the manner Netflix does. Cloyd, 30, said his experiences in television made him realize a locally-focused streaming business is needed in the District.
“My vision for this started in 2016 when I was working in the television industry for ABC,” Cloyd said. “In time, I developed an interest in the technological aspects of television. When the coronavirus pandemic set in, I decided to go for it and started Quadrant. From my interactions with people, I see that the demand is there. People want local content and due to the pandemic, people have started streaming.”
Cloyd said Netflix wants to increase its presence in the District but their content isn’t local but national. He said Quadrant wants to tell the stories of local Washingtonians, “whether they are Asian, Ethiopian, Latino or white because this is not a Black thing.”
Cloyd already has his first major contract. Starting the 2021-2022 school year, he will stream District of Columbia State Athletics Association high school football and boys and girls’ basketball regular-season games.
“I have heard of situations where parents wanted to go to their children’s games but could not go because of work or illness, Cloyd said. “This way, through Quadrant, they will be able to see their children play.”
Cloyd said another firm will stream the championship games.
50 Cent’s Priceless Advice
Cloyd grew up in the Shaw neighborhood in Northwest. He admits to being a member of a crew, a loose-knit group of young people associated generally with criminal activity and having been arrested a few times.
Cloyd attended Archbishop Carroll High School but dropped out during his junior year. He eventually received his high school diploma from Miami-based Continental Academy High School.
Cloyd has worked with television commentator Armstrong Williams as a producer and various places in the city while pursuing an acting career. He has acting credits for shows such as TV One’s “Thou Shalt Not”, ABC’s “For Life” and the Investigation Discovery Channel’s “Deadly Affairs.”
It was through “For Life” he met 50 Cent, the well-known rapper, songwriter, television producer, actor and entrepreneur. Cloyd played an inmate on “For Life”, which 50 Cent produced. He said working and talking with 50 Cent gave him great insight into the acting business.
“For me, 50 Cent is a great business mentor,” he said. “He showed me how to navigate the acting world. He stressed to me that the real power in the entertainment industry is behind the camera. 50 Cent also said the way to make money is to do it in my own city. Quadrant was born out of my conversations with him.”
Cloyd said his goal is to have Quadrant in three major cities grossing $25-50 million a year in five years. Cloyd has been accepted into the We Aspire program with the District’s Department of Small & Local Business Development, an incubator program. He said We Aspire has committed to help capitalize Quadrant. Additionally, he has had conversations with real estate developer R. Donahue Peebles on funding and possible collaborations.