News: Jay-Z Wanted Small Brooklyn Nets Ownership Percentage Under Wraps, Says Reporter

Wednesday, Aug 29, 2012 5:29PM

Written by Cyrus Langhorne

Nearly two weeks after the New York Times explored what goes on behind-the-scenes with the Brooklyn Nets, reporter David Halbfinger has come forward to discuss how much hesistation Jay-Z had toward the feature.

According to Halbfinger, Young Hov's camp told him they had no interest in having him do an interview prior to the stadium opening next month.

"The first couple of calls I made was to try and see if Jay-Z would talk to us because that would take the story in a very friendly direction presumably. There are issues with doing that. The issue if you get an interview is how much do you allow the interview to shape the direction of your reporting? In this case his people said, "No way, no how!" In fact, they tried to shut the story down arguing that this is just a hype story and why don't we wait until later when the arena is open. ... It was very straightforward and exactly how the story turned out to be. ... I also reminded them that I wrote the "American Gangster" piece. It's very simple. He invested $1 million and that was out of a $300 million purchase price. That's one-third of one percent, period. End of story." (The Launch Magazine)

He also opened up on the controversy behind Jay only owning one-fifteenth of one percent of the Nets.

"When Mikhail D. Prokhorov (the billionaire owner of the Brooklyn Nets) bought 80 percent of the team what that does is squeezes down the 100 percent of all the other people into 20 percent. Everybody who had a piece up to that point had their stake divided by five. That's it. Clearly what Jay's stake is worth now, you could calculate it if you knew what the team was valued at based on Prokhorov's purchase and then you could guess how much it's gone up or down since then. But it's just simple math. ... " (The Launch Magazine)

The feature exposed just how much actual control and ownership Jay has of the Brooklyn team.

Yesterday, The New York Times published an article highlighting all the things that Jay-Z has done to build the Brooklyn Nets brand after purchasing a minority stake in the franchise. Since Hov put down $1 million for the team nine years ago, the Nets have gone through a lot of downs, very few ups and a great amount of change. Still, Jay and his one-fifteenth of one percent ownership of the team (yeah, you read that correctly), have played an important role in nearly every facet of the Nets evolution from New Jersey to Brooklyn. (Complex)

Back in 2005, the rap mogul talked about making his million dollar ownership purchase.

Publicly, Jay-Z is quick to point out that he paid for his stake. "Nobody gave me anything," he declared in 2005. "I spent my money like everyone else, and I came in and added value." But just because he spent money doesn't mean he didn't get a hefty discount. Celebrities often receive sweetheart deals when buying stakes in professional sports teams, and Jay-Z isn't one to pass on such freebies. (Forbes)

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