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Sports & Entertainment Spotlight: As Streaming Continues to Surge, More Backend Compensation Disputes Between Talent and Studios Likely to Follow
    • BeyoncéBeyoncé’s announcement of building a hemp farm (together with a honey farm) brings the perceived health benefits of CBD even further into the mainstream. Could this momentum ultimately lead to positive conversations around the FDA approving the cannabis-derived compound as legal?
    • Scarlett Johansson’s escalating fight between her and Marvel Studios and Disney about the release of “Black Widow” highlights the issue that needs to be addressed sooner rather than later between studios and talent: how to compensate star and filmmakers fairly as more movies are being shown increasingly on major streaming platforms?
    • The world of NIL continues to turn rapidly, as even prep athletes such as quarterback Quinn Ewers of Southlake, Texas, is leaving high school early to enroll in Ohio State to pursue his football career and potentially rake in thousands of dollars in endorsement deals.
    • The dismissal of a copyright suit against 2 Chainz, Offset and UMG Recordings Inc. in a Manhattan federal court over the use of lyrics, “I’m tryna make my momma proud,” goes to show that copyright law doesn’t protect general ideas and themes.

Endorsements, Sponsorships & Investments 

NBA All-Star Chris Paul Invests in Koia With Joint Mission to Make Plant-Based Nutrition More Accessible to Underserved Communities
August 19, 2021 via Business Insider
NBA All-Star Chris Paul continues to pursue his plant-based mission with a financial investment in Koia, leaders in 100 percent plant-based nutrition shakes.

Reebok’s Journey With Adidas
August 17, 2021 via SGB Online - Outdoor Business News Headlines
Reebok’s sales peaked at $3.2 billion in 2004 and shrunk to $1.4 billion by 2020. However, the brand delivered growth for the majority of its 14 years under Adidas’ ownership, and profitability was its main challenge toward the end. Sales had slowed before its acquisition, with some of the lost revenue over the last 14 years reflecting challenging trends in the sports licensing space and an exit from all of the brand’s sponsorships with the four major sports leagues.

Zaxby's Adds UGA Quarterback J.T. Daniels to its Roster
August 17, 2021 via MarketWatch - All Company Press Releases News & Commentary
Zaxby's, the premium QSR known for its new Signature Sandwich, chicken fingers, wings and flavorful sauces, has inked a deal with University of Georgia quarterback J.T. Daniels for the upcoming college football season. Daniels is the first NCAA collegiate athlete to partner with Zaxby's and will serve as a brand ambassador for the 2021-2022 season.

Mariah Carey Launches Irish Cream Liqueur Brand Black Irish
August 17, 2021 via Drinks Business
Legendary singer Mariah Carey has announced the launch of her very own Irish liqueur brand, Black Irish, the name of which pays homage to her mixed heritage.

Los Angeles Lakers Sign BioSteel as Sports Drink Sponsor
August 17, 2021 via Sportico – Business (subscription may be required)
The Los Angeles Lakers pulled off a blockbuster trade this month to acquire Russell Westbrook, but the triple-double machine won’t be the only new addition to the Lakers’ bench next season. Hydration brand BioSteel has signed a multi-year partnership to be the official sports drink of the 17-time NBA champions, including a presence on the team bench and for in-arena signage.

Alex Rodriguez On Balancing Business And Being In The Public Eye
August 17, 2021 via Forbes (subscription may be required)
Alex Rodriguez, better known by many as A-Rod, has been a staple in the sports world for nearly two decades now, but his successful transition from Major League Baseball star to dedicated businessman has also made him a well-known figure in the ever-evolving entertainment world. The 46-year-old father of two is focused on building a pioneering empire through his A-Rod Corp, an investment firm that backs promising businesses with internal and external capital, works with championship teams, and creates value for investors.

Report: Jay-Z, 76ers’ Michael Rubin Apply for License to Create 'Fanatics Sportsbook'
August 16, 2021 via Bleacher Report
Jay-Z is reportedly set to become the latest celebrity to invest in the sports gambling field.

Progressive sponsorship brands likely to target Team GB’s female Tokyo stars
August 16, 2021 via Herald Scotland
Female stars of Team GB will benefit commercially from a continued societal shift towards embracing strong, fearless women, a women’s sports consultant has said. Great Britain’s team for the Tokyo Olympics included more women than men for the first time and helped showcase the talent of athletes such as Keely Hodgkinson, Bethany Shriever and Lauren Price.

Billie Jean King Wants Athletes to Follow the Money
August 15, 2021 via New Yorker – Business (subscription may be required)
You can draw a line from the one-dollar contract that Billie Jean King and eight other players signed, in 1970, with the publisher and promoter Gladys Heldman, to form a separate women’s tennis tour, and the three million dollars that Naomi Osaka took home for winning the 2020 U.S. Open—the same amount that the men’s winner, Dominic Thiem, received.

Everyday habits from the world’s most successful female entrepreneurs
August 14, 2021 via Motley Fool UK – News
It can feel like entrepreneurs have superhuman powers, juggling a plethora of activities while us mere mortals just want to flop on the sofa. But thanks to UK based card payments provider, Dojo, we can see the secrets of their success.

CBD Enthusiast Beyoncé Says She Is Building A Hemp Farm
August 14, 2021 via Forbes (subscription may be required)
American music artist Beyoncé is building a hemp farm. During an interview with Harper’s Bazar, “Queen B” revealed how she discovered CBD, one of the main compounds of the cannabis plant. "I discovered CBD on my last tour, and I’ve experienced its benefits for soreness and inflammation. It helped with my restless nights and the agitation that comes from not being able to fall asleep,” she told Harpers’ Bazar.

Film & TV

Stan extends WarnerMedia supply pipeline for blockbuster movies, classic TV
August 18, 2021 via Mediaweek
Nine-owned streaming platform Stan has extended its content partnership with WarnerMedia in a new deal that will bring a large slate of blockbuster movies to Stan, alongside over a thousand hours of Warner Bros television content and a raft of new children’s animated series and films.

Monkeypaw Productions Expands With Multiple Promotions Across the Company
August 17, 2021 via Deadline - Hollywood Breaking News
As Monkeypaw Productions (Jordan Peele’s production company) continues to expand its slate, Jamal Watson has joined as VP Production and Development. He comes from Overbrook Entertainment where he began his career as an intern before moving up the executive ranks, working on such films as Aladdin, Sprinter and Hala.

Amazon Inks Overall TV Deal, First-Look Film Deal With Development Executive Steven Prinz
August 17, 2021 via Variety
Longtime development executive Steven Prinz has signed an overall television deal and a first-look film deal with Amazon, Variety has learned. Prinz most recently served as global series executive for Amazon Studios, overseeing the development of projects from creators with first look and overall deals with the studio. Those included Plan B Entertainment, Michael B. Jordan’s Outlier Society, Riz Ahmed, Little Marvin, Alma Har’el, and more.

Talent Agency Endeavor Group Lifts Forecast on Return of Sports
August 17, 2021 via Bloomberg – Markets (subscription may be required)
Endeavor Group Holdings Inc., the newly public media company led by Hollywood superagent Ari Emanuel, raised its outlook for the year, thanks to a return of film and TV production, as well as live sports.

Forget ScarJo vs. Disney. Hollywood's Streaming fFght Is Just Beginning
August 16, 2021 via Los Angeles Times (subscription may be required)
Natasha Romanoff — a.k.a. Black Widow, the Marvel superspy portrayed by Scarlett Johansson — may have met her end in 2019’s “Avengers: Endgame.” But Johansson’s lawsuit against Walt Disney Co. could have an immortal legacy in Hollywood for the way it highlights a growing fight between studios and talent.

Music Biz

From Spotify’s $1 Billion Share Buyback to Downtown’s Big Change: It’s MBW’s Weekly Round-up
August 20, 2021 via Music Business Worldwide
Does Spotify believe the market is currently undervaluing its stock? That might be one reason why SPOT today (August 20) announced that its board has approved a stock repurchase program by the company up to the value of $1 billion.

SESAC Acquires Audiam, Founder Criticizes Deal
August 20, 2021 via Complete Music Update
U.S. song rights collecting society SESAC has acquired a majority stake in mechanical rights agency Audiam from its Canadian counterpart SOCAN. Audiam’s founder Jeff Price has criticised the deal, which he claims is actually an effort to cover up failures of the Harry Fox Agency, the American mechanical rights company that is already owned by SESAC.

Universal Music Group Inks Exclusive Global Music Deal With CoComelon Company Moonbug
August 19, 2021 via Music Business Worldwide
Moonbug Entertainment, the company behind a host of major kids’ entertainment titles, has inked an exclusive global partnership deal with Universal Music Group (UMG). Under the terms of the agreement, UMG will provide worldwide distribution, publishing and licensing for the Moonbug Music label and its popular kids and family music catalogs, including CoComelon, Little Baby Bum and Blippi.

UnitedMasters Is Now Offering $1 Million Advances to Indie Artists, Plus Real-Time Streaming Royalty Pay-Outs
August 18, 2021 via Music Business Worldwide
Steve Stoute's company teams with beatBread and Paperchain to up its game in the world of financial tools.

Chainz, Offset Dodge Copyright Suit Over ‘Proud’ Song, Lyrics
August 17, 2021 via Bloomgberg Law (subscription may be required)
2 Chainz, Offset, and UMG Recordings Inc. convinced a federal judge in Manhattan to dismiss a copyright infringement suit brought by a hip-hop artist who alleged their 2018 track “Proud” ripped off his 2015 song of the same name.

Warner Strikes ‘Monumental’ Multi-Year Deal With Madonna: Here’s Why It Matters
August 16, 2021 via Music Business Worldwide
Warner Music Group today (August 16) announced what it called a “career-spanning global partnership” with Madonna that “includes a new agreement for her entire recorded music catalog."

Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs)

WWE Launching John Cena NFTs
August 17, 2021 via Entrepreneur Magazine
For a man whose catchphrase is “you can’t see me,” John Cena made a pretty visible entry into the digital arena Tuesday when the WWE announced the creation of new NFTs in his honor.

How NFTs could be the future standard for trading and investing
August 17, 2021 via Forkast
NTFs are taking the art and collectibles world by storm. But more valuable uses for NFTs lie just around the corner, writes Ilja Laurs of Dappscape. NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, are unique, one-of-a-kind items that you can buy rights for through blockchain technology. One of the more popular examples for using NFTs is buying trading cards. NFTs are usually digital, which makes it really easy for creators to put their work into the market. The most expensive artwork sold so far was made by Beeple, and valued at $69 million.

Marvel Launches Marvel Mightys NFT Collection featuring Captain America
August 16, 2021 via Yahoo Finance - Top Stories
Marvel follows up its Spider-Man NFT collection with a release celebrating ‘the first Avenger.’ Marvel has announced the launch of a new NFT collection titled “Marvel Mightys — Season 1 — Captain America,” on the VeVe marketplace.

Time, 400 NFT in partnership with Cool Cats
August 16, 2021 via The Cryptonomist
The famous Time magazine will launch a collection of NFTs in collaboration with Cool Cats. The latter is one of the most popular projects currently in the field of NFTs.

Miami Hurricanes Become First University to Offer NFT Championship Rings
August 13, 2021 via Latest Articles
The University of Miami is the first college team to turn their championship rings into digital NFTs.

Dolce & Gabbana Sets Date for Haute Couture NFT Drop
August 13, 2021 via Crypto News Australia - Top Stories Worldwide
Italian haute couture fashion label Dolce & Gabbana will debut its NFT collection on the luxury marketplace UNXD later this month in a bid to bridge the physical with the metaphysical.

Right of Publicity

FTC’s Latest Facebook Fight Implicates NIL, Instagram

August 20, 2021 via Sportico – Law (subscription may be required)
As college athletes sign name, image and likeness deals tied to their social media fame, the Federal Trade Commission on Thursday (August 19) moved to fundamentally alter Instagram and other Facebook-owned properties that are popular with influencers.

Athletes Are Leaving High School Early to Cash In on Their Names
August 13, 2021 via New York Times - Most Recent (subscription may be required)
Quarterback Quinn Ewers of Southlake, Texas, was expected to lead his city’s storied high school team this fall in its quest for another state championship as the nation’s top football prospect. Instead, on Aug. 2, Ewers announced that he would graduate early, skip his senior season at Carroll Senior High School and enroll at Ohio State to pursue the starting quarterback job there and potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars in endorsement deals that N.C.A.A. athletes are now free to negotiate.

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The Sports, Arts & Entertainment group at Foster Garvey provides full service legal representation on sports, entertainment and business matters, including handling transactions related to brand management, licensing, joint ventures, venture capital, private equity, technology, the Internet and new media.
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