Jay-Z’s Marketing Power Decoded

At the turn of the century throwback jerseys was all the rage. In fact, Mitchell & Ness, which produced a lot of the vintage sportswear, expected to make $50 million in 2003, double what it made in 2002. But Jay-Z threw a monkey wrench in the pot when he rhymed, “And I don’t wear jerseys, I’m 30-plus/Give me a crisp pair of jeans, ni**a, button up,” on his 2003 song “What More Can I Say.” With that line, Jay-Z led many a fan to hang their throwback jerseys in their closets, permanently, in lieu of a more clean-cut look. Although throwbacks are no longer as popular in hip-hop circles, sport fans still dig jerseys enough that Adidas purchased Mitchell & Ness in 2007 for an undisclosed amount.

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