Jay-Z Has 99 Problems, and an SEC Subpoena Could Be One

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By Jennifer Bennett

He knows a little bit, but might need to find someone who’s passed the bar for this: rapper Shawn Carter, stage name Jay-Z, faces an SEC subpoena enforcement action over his Rocawear clothing brand.

The Securities and Exchange Commission wants Carter to answer questions about his relationship with Iconix Brand Group Inc., according to an SEC release. Carter—husband of megastar Beyoncé—sold approximately $200 million of Rocawear’s intangible assets in 2007 to Iconix.

Iconix is the subject of an SEC investigation into potential financial reporting violations. The company in 2016 announced a $169 million write down of Rocawear, with an additional $34 million writedown this March, the SEC said. Carter and Iconix maintained partnerships related to Rocawear after the sale.

The SEC first sought Carter’s testimony in November 2017, and issued a second subpoena in February. The agency seeks to enforce its subpoenas after Carter didn’t appear as directed and didn’t provide any alternative testimony dates.

The case is SEC v. Carter , S.D.N.Y., No. 1:18-mc-00182, subpoena enforcement request filed 5/2/18 .

To contact the reporter on this story: Jennifer Bennett in Washington at jbennett@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Seth Stern at sstern@bloomberglaw.com

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