UPDATE: As Jay-Z's lawyers would probably want us to clarify before they wake up, this was our April Fools. He's got 99 problems, but getting Armand de Brignac stains out of velvet walls ain't one. As Nic said on Twitter: A to the prizzel, F to the fizzle.
Not that he needs an excuse to visit South East London, but now we have an explanation for why Jay-Z was hanging out in Forest Hill last year. The rapper and businessman has added a majority stake in the Rivoli Ballroom to his $450 million empire, for an undisclosed sum, after a protracted negotiation.
Jay-Z already owns a nightclub chain (40/40 Club) and a New York gastropub (The Spotted Pig) and BC understands that he intends to leave the iconic Brockley venue unchanged, having fallen in love with it during a 2008 fashion shoot, according to his 2010 autobiography Decoded.
Although the current management team has been asked to stay on and all of the regular events will be allowed to continue, the deal will mean that the Rivoli becomes a regular host venue for new UK artists signed to Roc Nation, the label Jay-Z co-founded. In the short-term though, BC understands that the only change we'll see is an upgrade to the venue's selection of cognacs.
Details are emerging as we write, so we'll update the article this afternoon. With thanks to Crofton Park Decoder for the tip-off.
UPDATE: Reaction on Twitter has been immediate and overwhelmingly positive:
“@brockleycentral: The Rivoli gets new owners... fb.me/2I2RUILyL” Er, Jay-Z just bought The Rivoli. WHAT?
— Jesster (@the_bad_pony) April 1, 2013
Jay-Z has bought a majority stake in The Rivoli Ballroom in Brockley. Bonkers.
— Alicia McBride (@aliciamcbride) April 1, 2013
Welcome to Brockley, @beyonce and @s_c_ brockleycentral.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/run-th…
— Bohemia Hair (@Bohemiahair) April 1, 2013
Jay-Z buys the Rivoli Ballroom: Brockley Central has the excellent news about Jay-Z buying the Rivoli Ballroom... bit.ly/126IBp3
— SE23 Forum (@SE23Forum) April 1, 2013
Rivoli Ballroom. Jay-Z is the new owner. Brockley, I just love you #lifelongresident
— Claire Baigent (@clairebaigent) April 1, 2013
Excellent news for south east london. Jay-Z buys controlling stake in the Rivoli ballroom Brockley brockleycentral.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/run-th…
— Barney Ronay (@barneyronay) April 1, 2013