Jay Z Buys ‘Ace of Spades’ Champagne Stake From Sovereign Brands

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Rapper Shawn “Jay Z” Carter has bought an interest in the Armand de Brignac Champagne line owned by Sovereign Brands, a closely held wine and liquor company based in New York.

The brand, which Jay Z has previously promoted in his music and public appearances, is known for its metallic bottles, which are made by hand at the Cattier family’s 251-year-old chateau in Chigny-les-Roses, France. They feature a pewter insignia of an ace of spades rather than a paper label. Prices start at about $250 a bottle.

The move marks the latest business venture for Jay Z, who has invested in a record label, restaurants, clothing and a talent agency. He also owned a stake in the New Jersey Nets until last year. He’s one of several rap stars who have leveraged their celebrity to become entrepreneurs. Andre “Dr. Dre” Young sold his Beats headphones brand to Apple Inc. earlier this year for $3 billion. Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, meanwhile, had an interest in the Glaceau water brand.

Armand de Brignac has been a staple in high-priced packages at nightclubs. At Hyde, a club at MGM Resorts International’s Bellagio in Las Vegas, a package that included a 30-liter bottle of the Champagne and the right to turn on the casino’s musical fountains cost $250,000.

Armand de Brignac released a collector’s package last year that included every one of its nine bottle sizes from 750-milliliter to the 30-liter “Midas,” the equivalent in total of 109 standard bottles. It sold for $500,000 at MGM’s Hakkasan nightclub in Las Vegas.

Jay Z once promoted Cristal Champagne in songs, though he stopped in 2006 after the company that owns the brand made negative comments about hip-hop culture.

In announcing in the transaction yesterday, Sovereign didn’t provide financial terms. Jana Fleishman, a spokeswoman for Jay-Z, said the rapper wasn’t available to comment.