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Posts Tagged ‘Zack O’Malley Greenburg’

Jay Z’s Life Just Keeps Getting Better [Updated]

It’s good to be Jay Z.

In 2006, he featured French champagne brand Armand de Brignac, alongside Danica Patrick and Dale Earnhardt Jr., in the music video “Show Me What You Got.” This week*, he concluded a deal to buy a stake in the company from New York’s Sovereign Brands. From the New York Times report:

Yvonne Lardner, a spokeswoman for Sovereign Brands, said the company has had a “wonderful relationship” with Jay Z. “He became interested in owning the brand and made us an offer we simply couldn’t refuse,” she said.

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Update on Pulled Jay-Z Article in The Atlantic

Yesterday FishbowlNY broke the news that The Atlantic pulled an article that detailed an alleged connection between Jay-Z and a sparkling wine that may have lead to the rapper making millions behind closed doors. We reached out to the author, Zack O’Malley Greenburg, as well as The Atlantic for comment, and didn’t hear back from either, which made us even more curious. Natually, instead of going away, we pushed further.

Late last night we finally heard from Greenburg, who encouraged us to speak to someone at Penguin, the publishing house behind his book, Empire State of Mind (the pulled article is an excerpt). We sent them some questions via email, and Penguin President and Publisher Adrian Zackheim responded. He tells FishbowlNY that The Atlantic has kept both Greenburg and Penguin in the dark about its reasons for pulling the piece.

“[We heard] only that the piece was pulled for unspecified editorial reasons. This was an authorized, negotiated arrangement for the publication of the excerpt. We were told after the fact that the excerpt had been removed. We haven’t heard any more.”

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The Atlantic Pulls Unflattering Jay-Z Article

[Updates after the jump]

Yesterday The Atlantic ran an excerpt from a book on Jay-Z that shows the rapper in some rather unflattering light. Now that article is nowhere to be found (here’s a reposting of it). The author, Zack O’Malley Greenburg, writes that Jay is receiving millions per year for endorsing a sparkling wine called Armand de Brignac.

The problem is that everyone affiliated with the wine – as well as Jay-Z – denies any business ties. If this doesn’t seem like a big deal, check the mathematics:

The production cost per bottle of Armand de Brignac is about $13; the wholesale price is $225. The maximum output is 60,000 bottles per year. If Jay-Z splits the $212-per-bottle profit evenly with Cattier and Sovereign, a back-of-the-envelope calculation suggests his annual take would be a little over $4 million. One of my sources confirmed that number, and added that Jay-Z may have received equity in Sovereign Brands worth about $50 million. All for dropping a few lyrical references and featuring Armand de Brignac in a couple of videos.

As you can see, if authorities ever confirm the ties between Jay-Z and Armand, they will definitely try to knock the hustle. Which leads FishbowlNY to wonder: Did Jay have his people pressure The Atlantic to pull the piece?

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New Hires At Forbes, Including Jeff Bercovici

Forbes has now officially announced that Jeff Bercovici, formerly of Aol’s Daily Finance blog, has joined their editorial staff to cover tech, media and advertising.

Additionally, Kashmir Hill is joining Forbes to write about the intersection of law, technology, consumer information and social media.  She will also provide support and guidance for staffers as they focus more of their efforts on social media, and help build the new front of the book section of the magazine. Hill joins Forbes from “Above the Law,” where the worked as editor.

Another blogger joining Forbes‘ staff is Nicholas Sabloff, who will help run the home page and help guide breaking news efforts. Sabloff was previously the Huffington Post’s world editor.

Zack O’Malley Greenburg returns from writing about Jay-Z  to work as a staff writer for Forbes, covering finance and entertainment. He’ll write “The Beat Report” blog on the business of music (so he can write even more about Jay-Z! One hopes).

Halah Touryalai is also joining as staff writer, covering investments. She previously covered Wall Street and the brokerage and financial advisor industry for Registered Rep.

Forbes Layoffs Decimate Staff

The bloodshed has begun in earnest at Forbes on this cold, rainy day: 100 employees were let go from the billionaire listing magazine, including Lauren Sherman, the girlfriend of Silicon Alley Insider writer Dan Frommer:


Some of our friends and former colleagues were let go as well. We knew they were coming, but we didn’t realize how deep the staff cuts would be. Although we’re hearing that close to 100 people have lost their jobs company wide, David Carr reported that between 40 and 60 editorial staff members would get the axe. Those sort of cuts are huge in a staff of only 200. Who is left?

Know anyone else who got a pink slip from Forbes today? Send us an email or leave a note in the anonymous tip box at right.

UPDATE: We reached out to Forbes‘ senior VP of Corporate Communications Monie Begley to see if she would confirm any of the rumors about the number of people laid off there. “Forbes will not be confirming the number of layoffs that have occurred this week,” Begley said in a statement. “It is a very sad day at the company and a sad day for our colleagues and friends.”

Another Update: Our sister blog MediaJobsDaily did some digging and found some names of those let go by Forbes today. In addition to Sherman, London bureau chief Anita Raghavan, associate editor Chana Schoenberger, deputy chief of reporters Andy Stone, assistant editor Klaus Kneale and reporter Anna Vander Broek are also said to have gotten pink slips. We’ve also heard sad news about reporter Lauren Streib, who has worked on link-bait Forbes lists like the recent Top-Earning Dead Celebs List.

More names: We’ve been hearing more names of people cut from Forbes: ForbesLife editor-in-chief Gary Walther; longtime Billionaires List contributor Tatiana Serafin; Richard Morais; Zack O’Malley Greenburg; Jack Gage; John Chamberlain and Bill Heuslien. Keith Kelly is also reporting that Los Angeles bureau chief Scott Woolley, senior editor Bernard Condon and Jonathan Latimer, head of business development, were given the axe.

Earlier: Breaking: More Layoffs Hit Forbes

–Additional reporting by Drew Grant