ESPN is reporting that Roc Nation Sports is considering a boxing division and hiring longtime fight executive Dave Itskowitch to run it.
The plan is reportedly to promote cards and also to turn boxers into celebrities.
“This is an opportunity for us to change the game,” Michael Yormark, president and chief of branding and strategy for Roc Nation who is also the twin brother of Barclays Center CEO Brett Yormark, told ESPN. “Jay Z has an incredible passion for boxing. We want to take the platform we’ve created and bring that to the boxing industry. We want to bring more money and visibility to the sport and give the boxers opportunities outside the ring.”
“There’s no question Roc Nation Sports can create celebrity status for boxers and align them with corporate America,” Yormark said. “Look at the success we’ve had with our athletes and (recording)artists (represented by parent company Roc Nation). That is what we do, and we do that better than anyone. We will be able to build brands for these boxers and build their careers outside of the ring. That’s the difference that Roc Nation will bring to this sport.”