According to CNBC, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has subpoenaed Jay Z to testify in an investigation centered on the Iconix Brand Group. The commission is attempting to discover disparities between the company’s financial reporting and any potential violations of federal securities laws. Jay is involved in this effort as Iconix paid him over $200 million to buy assets of his Rocawear apparel company.
“After the acquisition, Carter and Iconix maintained publicly disclosed partnerships related to the Rocawear brand,” said the SEC.
While the SEC seems concerned that Jay, whose real name is Shawn Carter, hasn’t yet testified, Carter’s representatives maintain that he shouldn’t have anything to do with this investigation at all.
“We are aware that the SEC is seeking information on Iconix’s financial reporting,” a representative of Carter’s said. “Mr. Carter had no role in that reporting or Iconix’s other actions as a public company. Mr. Carter is a private citizen who should not be involved in this matter.”
All of this began in November, when the SEC subpoenaed Carter to testify—then issued another request in February of this year. This most recent filing claims that he still hasn’t provided the commission with availability dates for a court appearance, with the representative’s statement above clearly explaining why he hasn’t.
Unfortunately for Iconix, shares dropped significantly after wind of the SEC’s recent filing hit the news today. As for Jay, it’s likely that he simply entered into a business transaction and was appropriately paid for certain assets, with no wrongdoing on his part—and that the SEC is simply clamoring for any and all information related to its investigation.