Jay-Z’s Roc Nation Sued by Official Brands over “ThrowUpTheX” Business
Official Brands, a sports marketing firm that helped to build Dallas Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant’s “ThrowUpTheX” brand, filed a lawsuit against Roc Nation, alleging that Roc Nation poached the representation of Bryant from it.
According to the court documents filed, Official Brands alleged Bryant requested the company’s vice president, Ryan Toka, to manage his off-field interests that resulted in the two-year contract Bryant signed with Official Brands in 2014.
Official Brands claimed that under the agreement it provided “unprecedented services” to build “ThrowUpTheX,” including handling his social media accounts, personal website, providing tickets to Mavericks and Stars games for his family. It further claimed to have “invested substantial time and money” in developing the brand.
Since Bryant switched his agent from Eugene Parker to Roc Nation in November 2014, Roc Nation “embarked on a scheme to utilize its employees to unlawfully induce Dez Bryant to terminated Dez I Enterprises Inc.’s contract with plaintiff and to shift all of his off-field business, including the ‘Throw up the X’ brand to defendants,” according to the court documents.
Moreover, Official Brands argued that “[t]he tactics used by defendants to induce Dez Bryant to terminate Dez I Enterprises Inc.’s contract with plaintiff included unsolicited contact with Dez Bryant and making false and disparaging statements to Dez Bryant concerning plaintiff and Ryan Totka, as well as, upon information and belief, providing Dez Bryant with numerous improper enticements in order to induce Dez Bryant to terminate the contract and relationship with plaintiff and Ryan Totka.”
Dez Bryant launched the “ThrowUpThe X” brand to capitalize on his signature touchdown celebration.
Neither Dez Bryant nor Jay-Z are parties to the lawsuit.