Business

Jay-Z joins cannabis company Caliva as chief brand strategist

Posted July 9, 2019 5:30 p.m. EDT

— You can't knock the hustle: Jay-Z is joining the cannabis industry.

Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter — billionaire rapper, producer, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and Beyoncé Knowles' husband — will serve as the chief brand strategist for Caliva, a burgeoning California company that counts former star NFL quarterback Joe Montana as an investor.

"Anything I do, I want to do correctly and at the highest level," Carter said in a statement on Tuesday when the partnership was announced. "With all the potential in the cannabis industry, Caliva's expertise and ethos makes them the best partner for this endeavor."

In addition to influencing Caliva's creative direction, social justice will be a key component of Carter's role.

"In this position, Mr. Carter will focus on and work to increase the economic participation of citizens returning from incarceration -- many of who are not seeing the monetary benefits of legalization -- through advocacy, job training and overall employee and workforce development," company officials said in a statement.

Caliva officials and Carter could not be immediately reached for comment.

Jay-Z joins Montana, Snoop Dogg, Whoopi Goldberg, Willie Nelson, Martha Stewart as part of a growing list of celebrities who have jumped into the cannabis business in recent years as a number of states have legalized marijuana in some form.

The San Jose, California-based Caliva grows, manufactures and sells a variety of branded products including cannabis flower, pre-rolled joints, vaporizers, edibles and topical lotions sold online via delivery and in more than 250 dispensaries across its home state.

Earlier this year, Caliva raised $75 million from a group of investors including Montana and former Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz.