Jason Geter, the Brains Behind T.I.’s Brand Hustle

T.I.’s business partner and manager explains how he brings order to the King's court while carving out his own career path

T.I. and manager/business manager Jason Geter

What’s a typical day like for Jason Geter?

A lot of emails and a lot of conference calls [laughs]. I’m juggling between managing T.I.’s career and the record label. Then, I manage [other acts] on the label. I’m constantly talking, arranging, planning and strategizing different parts of the business for those acts. At the same time I’m getting calls talking about movies and scripts and trying to develop projects. Then I may flip to Akoo. We have marketing calls and different things to talk about on that end. Then Strivers Row, which is like my little baby. I’m approaching Strivers Row as if it’s an artist I’m bringing up from zero. From factories to marketing, product placement, design concepts and ideas, I’m very hands on.

Let’s talk about your role as a manager. What’s it like being the man behind and alongside a superstar such as T.I.?

It’s a lot of work. More than anything it’s great to see we started from zero and had this dream and we’ve definitely accomplished a lot of goals. We’ve seen our dream come to reality. It’s constant work so it’s not like I’m sitting back and reflecting too much because you’re always in the moment of running the business. You’re only as good as your last hit so you’re always chasing that next thing, that next moment.

Was it hard to run the business and keep the brand in good standing when T.I. was incarcerated?

Sure, it’s the music business. People will forget and remember at the drop of a hat. When he was away a lot of people were like, “Hey, get back to me when your guy’s back.” From that standpoint there were challenges. Luckily we still had B.o.B. doing his thing, waving the flag and working. I had to do what I could do in supporting him. I spent a lot of time working on Akoo, which made nearly $20 million in sales this past year. I also focused on Striver’s Row, as well as the other acts I work with.

What business tips would you give to anyone who wants to be an entrepreneur in the music business?

The music industry is not what it used to be. The business is shrinking. There’s only three companies left, three record companies that is, on a major level. Do your research, get an internship and get a real understanding of what’s going on before you throw your eggs in one basket. Make sure it’s something that you really want to do. Make sure it’s something you can really have a future at, and that you’re not just trying to do it because it may seem like it’s glamorous.

If you’re going to be an entrepreneur you have to work. That means that you’re the boss. That means you got to eat what you kill. A lot of people aren’t really built for that. A lot of people are better off going into an office, doing their assignment and excelling in that atmosphere as opposed to being by yourself and having to go figure it out. You have to know what kind of person you are more than anything.

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