You’re an elite ballplayer with the world at your fingertips. Why wouldn’t you want to sign with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation Sports?
GQ has one of the more interesting interviews you’re sure to run across this week, sitting down with Juan Perez, Roc’s president. Not that it takes a rocket scientist to figure out why a young man might possibly want to be represented by Hov, but Perez definitely adds a bit of insight in his first-ever interview.
On Robinson Cano being Nation’s first athlete:
Robbie was perfect. Already huge, a massive inspiration to the Latin community. One of the best players in baseball, the best player at his position. He’s outgoing, he’s always smiling, has discipline, hard-working. It’s easy to market a guy like that.
On their pitch to Cano and the appeal of Roc Nation:
We just explained to Robbie that we’re a 360 company. We don’t just have an agent to negotiate contracts. We also have the branding, the marketing, the publicity. We have different departments. We have artists… We’re all one big family. We wrap our arms around each other. If Robbie needs something and one of the artists has it…. They send Instagram Happy Birthdays. We’re a family. Everybody sticks together here.
Well, what we bring to the table in negotiations, is we show the ball clubs how strong we are on the marketing side. Because at the end of the day, you want to put people in the stands. We help develop a player’s brand off the field, which eventually brings more fans, more recognition to the player so more people want to meet the player, see the players play. So we’re branding the player, marketing the player—that makes the player even bigger than what he was when we got him. That helps as far as negotiating.
On future plans:
Yeah, right now we’re just boutique-ish. And we want to keep it that way. Maybe ten, fifteen football players. Ten, fifteen baseball players. We don’t want it to be 150, a thousand players, nah… It depends. There aren’t that many elite players out there, that many players that we want. So we’ll be picking them as they come. The ones that are interested and that we love, we’ll take. It could take a year, it could take a month, I don’t know. If I could get ‘em all in one month, I’ll take ‘em.
Again, this 360 talk shouldn’t exactly come as a surprise considering Jay’s clout within the industry. Dudes like Kevin Durant aren’t shy in hiding their love for Hip-Hop. If they stand a chance at excelling outside of their respective sport, it’s probably with Roc Nation.