Jay-Z Pursues Lawsuit Against Big Papi Thanks to Hot Sauce
Jay-Z had a hit back in 2000 dubbed 'Hey Papi,' but now, he's got a problem with "Big Papi." The emcee, who launched his chain of 40/40 Clubs in 2003, sued Boston Red Sox player David "Big Papi" Ortiz back in April 2010 for naming his Dominican Republic nightclub 40/40, infringing on Jay's trademark. The suit asked for $5 million in damages, which Ortiz attempted to settle out of court this past June.
But Jay isn't having it. The New York Post reports that Jigga man's lawyers won permission to continue with his lawsuit against Ortiz, who claimed that he couldn't be sued because his 40/40 Club had no ties to any business in New York City, where the suit was filed. Prosecutors were given the green light to pursue compensation when they proved that Ortiz's "Big Papi En Fuego" hot sauce was developed and marketed by Manhattan licensing firm Off Beat LLC, a connection that counters Ortiz's defense.
Jay's 40/40 Club, which has locations in Atlantic City and is set to open new establishments in Chicago, Tokyo and Macau this year, is a joint venture with Desiree Gonzalez and Juan Pérez, who was ironically signed by the Red Sox back in 1998 as a free agent. The chain has become one of the premiere sports bars in New York City, though it didn't take off in Las Vegas after a franchise opened and shortly closed in 2008.
Jay-Z's latest album, 'The Blueprint 3,' became his eleventh chart-topping LP when it was released in September 2009. Critically lauded, the album includes the hit singles 'D.O.A. (Death of Autotune),' 'Empire State of Mind' and 'Young Forever,' selling almost two million copies since its release.