Jay-Z Sued for $20M in Cologne Contract Claim

By Ephrat Livni, Esq. on January 26, 2016 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Jay-Z is familiar with the sweet smell of success, and when he gives a product his blessing, it's likely to sell. It is easy then to get the impression from the hip-hop superstar's range of interests, and his riches, that everything Jay-Z touches turns to gold.

Not so. Even Jay-Z can't avoid promotions. And his failure to promote on behalf of Gold Jay-Z cologne, made by Parlux Fragrances, prompted the company to sue him for $20 million in New York state court in Manhattan today, reports Gossip Cop.

The Lawsuit Contends

According to filings, Sean Carter -- Jay-Z's given name -- has ignored his contractual obligations to promote Gold Jay-Z on television, in print publications, and at live appearances. The company's complaint states, "Sales of Gold Jay-Z have declined considerably because of Jay-Z's and his team's lack of interest in supporting and promoting his own brand."

The perfume maker also complained that the rapper was difficult. The company reportedly created 5 different $20,000 prototypes of Gold Jay-Z, with bottles made of gold. The rapper rejected all of the prototypes but kept the pricey bottles, the company claims.

Parlux Fragrances wants a judge to void the contract with the entertainer. The company is seeking $20 million in damages. Parlux wants Jay-Z to cough up a $2 million paid to him in royalties and $18 million in damages, and is seeking to have his 300,000 shares in parent company, Perfumania Holdings, Inc. voided along with his contract.

What Is Breach of Contract?

There has not yet been a response by Jay-Z's legal team to the perfumer's breach of contract claims. The company claims that it had a deal with the star to promote Gold Jay-Z and that he breached the agreement by backing out of scheduled promotional appearances.

Whether the company's claims will succeed depends on the details of the contract it is now seeking to void. A breach of contract can occur when a party fails to perform in accordance with the terms of an agreement or doesn't perform at all. Parlux Perfumes says Jay-Z's breaches are to blame for his cologne not selling. It will be interesting to hear his defense after the rapper's legal team has had an opportunity to sniff out the scent-maker's complaint.

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