Jay-Z‘s Roc Nation empire continues to flourish. Last week the shrewd music mogul announced a new venture into sports , and on Monday (April 8) Hov raised the bar once again with a new global partnership between his entertainment company and Universal Music Group.
Now Roc Nation will operate as an independent music label within Universal. “This agreement presents a unique opportunity for Roc Nation’s artists — being able to continue to operate as an independent label with the strength, power and reach of the best major,” Hov said in a press release. “I look forward to a long and prosperous collaboration with UMG. It feels good to be home.”
Hov founded Roc Nation in 2008, years after he spilt with his Roc-A-Fella co-founders Damon Dash and Kareem “Biggs” Burke. In five years, he has positioned the brand to be more than just a record label, branching out into artist management, touring and sports among other areas. Now artists and athletes including Rihanna, J. Cole, Rita Ora, Shakira, Wale, Calvin Harris, Solange Knowles, Timbaland, deadmau5 and New York Yankee second baseman Robinson Cano all have some tie of sorts to the Roc Nation brand.
The move is likely to have an immediate impact on Rihanna, however, since she’s already signed into the Universal system through her deal with Def Jam. There’s no word yet on how Hov’s deal will impact Roc artists like J. Cole, who signed to RN through the label’s previous deal with Sony.
“All of us at UMG are thrilled that Jay and Roc Nation chose UMG as their partners, knowing we will support their artists with a level of resources, expertise and passion that is simply unmatched in the industry,” UMG Chairman and CEO Lucian Grainge said in the statement.
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