News: Jay-Z Loosens Up His Tie, Prepares To Save Rocawear

Monday, Feb 6, 2012 4:43PM

Written by Cyrus Langhorne

Rap mogul Jay-Z is reportedly on a mission to save the Rocawear clothing brand he co-founded alongside former business partner Damon "Dame" Dash in light of recent struggling sales.

According to reports, Young Hov will use the power of television to boost Rocawear's presence.

Jay-Z, 42, is lending his A-list status and will star in the brand's first-ever television campaign. Filmed in November, the spot will begin to air on outlets including MTV, BET and TNT, most prominently during NBA basketball games. "Titled 'From Marcy to Madison Square,' the black-and-white spots track Jay-Z's rise from selling CDs out of the trunk of a car in the Marcy Projects of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, to headlining concerts at Madison Square Garden. The spot uses footage from Jay-Z's 'Watch the Throne' concert at MSG in November," WWD writes. (Us Magazine)

Additional reports claim Rocawear will attempt to venture into children's clothing.

Jay-Z is giving Rocawear some much needed face time. The 42 year-old rapper and entrepreneur will star in the company's first-ever television ad campaign in order to boost sales, reports Usmagazine.com. The ad, which tells the story of the rapper's rise from the Marcy projects to Madison Square Garden, will air on MTV, BET and during NBA basketball games, reports Women's Wear Daily. The brand is also attempting an expansion into children's clothing. (New York Daily News)

Last month, the company laid off a portion of its New York-based staff workers.

Rocawear -- the hip-hop clothing brand founded in 1999 by rapper entrepreneurs Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter and Damon Dash -- laid off half the staff of its men's and boys apparel division on Jan. 6, one day before Jay-Z's wife, Beyoncé Knowles, gave birth to the couple's baby girl. Rocawear's New York headquarters -- a 40,000-square-foot facility at 1411 Broadway where Jay-Z took an office in 2009 -- fired 28 of its 56 workers for "economic" reasons, according to documents filed with the New York State Department of Labor. Jay-Z, formerly a "big presence" in the office, rarely shows up anymore, an insider told The Post. "It's kind of like he's given up on the brand," the source added. (New York Post)

Despite selling the brand a few years ago, Jay has been known to support Rocawear.

Jay-Z has retained an interest in Rocawear as part of his 2007 deal, according to the Post, but his contractual obligations to the brand have expired and the rapper has since refused to promote it amid steady, double-digit sales drops. "Jay-Z doesn't do anything without getting paid a lot of money -- a lot more than Rocawear is generating," a source reportedly to the paper. (Huffington Post)

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