James Cruz, president of Bad Boy Entertainment and longtime manager of Sean “Diddy” Combs, is exiting Combs Enterprises after 18 years to launch Latin marketing agency 123 UnoDosTres and to focus on the expansion of Cruz Control Management. He will continue to book Combs for global talent engagements and remains an adviser to the Combs Enterprises management team.
Cruz’s background includes marketing positions at SRC Marketing Group, where he was president and led marketing campaigns for SanDisk and UFC; and at Violator Management, where, as senior VP of marketing and promotions, he was a key player in advancing the careers of Busta Rhymes, Missy Elliott and 50 Cent and a stakeholder in Violator Marketing Group, an offshoot of the company. Among the brands he has worked with are Vitamin Water, RBK, Showtime Sports and Brand Jordan.
In announcing his departure, Cruz said: “The past two decades collaborating with Sean Combs and helping to transform Bad Boy into Combs Enterprises has been an incredible experience. I am so fortunate to work with some of the most talented executives in the business to help shape culture. Bad Boy started as a family and I will always consider everyone, especially my dear friend, Sean Combs, family. I look forward to this next new chapter with the same confidence and passion that made the last 18 years so amazing.”
Added Combs: “James is one of the original members of the Bad Boy Family. His contributions over the past nearly two decades have been instrumental to the growth and development of the organization. While he will be leaving the company, he will not be leaving our family.”
The Bad Boy family, and the label’s history, was recently the subject of the well-received 2017 documentary “Can’t Stop Won’t Stop: A Bad Boy Story,” in which Cruz appears.