Jazmine Sullivan makes her return with the release of her new single called Dumb featuring Meek Mill produced by Key Wane.
Illustration by Reid Kikuo Johnson
Inside the bidding war to sponsor the hottest tour of the summer.
This article first appeard in the May 17th issue of Billboard Magazine.
Jay Z and Beyoncé’s On the Run tour is already one of the summer concert season’s hottest engagements. Tickets sold out in minutes. Overnight, the average price on the secondary market soared to $342.67 — an 82.3% increase from Jay Z’s last summer stadium outing with Justin Timberlake, according to ticket aggregator TiqIQ. But fans aren’t the only ones scrambling for a piece of the action. The lucrative tour sparked competition among top brands in financial services, which jockeyed with other bidders for sponsorship rights.
JP Morgan Chase emerged victorious — touting its size, partnerships and pocketbook — with an 11th-hour negotiation, according to four sources familiar with the deal. And though it’s a rare tour sponsorship for the bank, the deal establishes Chase as a formidable player in what had previously been a two-way rivalry between Citi and American Express for such deals.
With 50 million customers in the United States, Chase is one of the country’s largest bank and credit card companies. (AmEx, for its part, has 53.5 million U.S. card holders as of March 31, while Citi has a reported 55 million members stateside.) Chase has had few music or concert sponsorships in the past, beyond a 10-year, $300 million pact with Madison Square Garden and a 2013 deal with Clear Channel’s Jingle Ball tour. “We are picky with respect to the events we align our brand against,” says Steve Pamon, head of sports and entertainment marketing at Chase.
But the bank has a deep relationship with CAA Sports, a minority investor in Jay Z’s Roc Nation Sports, which helped drive the decision to bid roughly $4 million in cash, according to sources. That was enough to secure the come-from-behind win.
Pamon disputes the rumored price tag. “The economics of this tour are greatly exaggerated. It’s not just rights fees, but the activation,” he says, referring to the VIP areas and other exclusive card member experiences on-site at the shows.
Citi, for its part, does a lot more tour sponsorships — multimillion-dollar deals for the likes of Billy Joel, The Rolling Stones and Katy Perry in the last 12 months alone. Citi had a 22% increase in overall ticket sales in 2013 through its partnership with Live Nation, which included more than 60 of the year’s top 100 tours.
“With marquee tours there is always competition,” says a Citi representative. “We have enjoyed working with Jay Z and Beyonce on multiple tours and have great respect for them.” AmEx, which sells fewer tickets than Citi, still had a record year in 2013, with over 1.8 million tickets sold to card members, including seven of last year’s top 20 tours. An AmEx representative declined comment, as did a Roc Nation spokesperson.
On our quest to live our best possible lives, it is imperative that we remember that whatever we do, we ought to be having fun!! Nothing in the world is ever worth stress, anxiety, or depression! NOTHING!! If you don’t LOVE what you’re doing, chances are you are not going to be really successful at it… so not only are you wasting your time, you are causing yourself unnecessary misery in the process… Effective immediately you MUST have fun! Enjoy your work! Enjoy Life, Enjoy Yourself, Enjoy Your Friends, Enjoy Your Family, Enjoy the World… Just Enjoy!! And as Curtis Jackson (@50Cent) once said… “You have a lot of living to do before you die, and you don’t have time to waste!! #HaveFun
With news breaking yesterday evening of Apple’s acquisition of Beats Electronics for a reported $3.2 billion, the question of whether Beats principle Dr. Dre (née Andre Young) — who co-founded the company with Interscope boss Jimmy Iovine — stands to become the wealthiest hip-hop artist or not is something many are wondering.
Put another way by Dre himself, he could be “The first billionaire in hip-hop, right here from the mother-f$%&*#$ West Coast, believe it!” (see GIF below)
Dre’s words are from the video below posted to Tyrese Gibson’s Facebook and came within hours of the Apple-Beats news. In the video, featuring a group of “homies drunk off of Heineken,” Tyrese calls his crew the “billionaires boys club,” saying “the Forbes list just changed” and needs to be “updated,” before Dre makes his monetary boast.
The Forbes list in question came out last month and saw Sean “Diddy” Combs topping annual survey with $700 million in earnings, due in large part to his deals with Ciroc and his recently-launched Revolt.tv. Second on the list is Dr. Dre at $550 million, thanks to his stake in Beats. The company controls two thirds of the premium headphone market, according to Forbes, and has annual sales in excess of $1 billion.
Beats Electronics is a privately held company and therefore does not have to make detailed financial information public. Companies only have to make that information available when they register for IPOs, according to SEC regulations.
Dre’s stake in Beats is estimated to be in the 20-25% range. If he were to earn that amount directly from the $3.2 billion sale his take would be somewhere between $640 million and $800 million, before taxes. With that amount, combined with his earnings of $550 million last year as well as his other income streams (album sales, publishing royalties, his work with HP laptops) the hip-hop legend would be very close to a net worth of a billion dollars.
So: If the deal doesn’t make Dre the first hip-hop billionaire, it definitely puts him close to it. It ain’t nothing but a many, many Gs thang.
Congrats!! homie,i need that camera