Rap mogul Jay-Z, otherwise known as Shawn Carter, has succeeded in many businesses. He has become one of the most successful rappers and musicians of all time, has had a successful clothing company, an incredibly successful record company, and one of the hottest clubs in New York City. At the beginning of April, he announced that he'd be starting Roc Nation Sports to represent athletes from the major sports.
You have to be certified by the unions of the leagues themselves to be allowed to represent athletes during contract negotiations. Jay-Z and Roc Nation cleared their first hurdle in that process on Thursday, when the National Basketball Players Association certified Jay-Z and Roc Nation Sports president Juan Perez to negotiate contracts with NBA teams. From the Sports Business Daily:
Jay-Z and Roc Nation Sports President Juan Perez have been granted certification by the NBPA to represent NBA players in contract negotiations with clubs. The NBPA is the first sports union to grant Jay-Z certification. Jay-Z, Perez and Roc Nation Sports VP Rich Kleiman also applied for certification with the MLBPA, and a decision on those applications is expected soon.
Jay-Z launched Roc Nation Sports on April 1 with the intent to create a full-service sports agency which represents players in all of the major sports. Anyone can represent athletes for marketing, but in order to negotiate playing contracts, agents must be certified by the unions that represent players in the NBA, NFL, MLB and NHL.
It has already been reported that Kevin Durant left Landmark Sports to join Jay-Z and Roc Nation Sports. Being certified to represent players in contract negotiations instead of just marketing could open the floodgates of an exodus from agencies with more history for an agency that might have more flash and cachet.
In order to be able to represent players as an agent, Jay-Z had to sell his minority ownership stake in the Brooklen Nets, which he did around the time of the announcement of the launch of Roc Nation Sports.