Asked about recent allegations of sexual harassment concerning movie mogul Harvey Weinstein — and a slew of others — Scooter Braun had this to say:“When I came into the business, that behavior wasn’t surprising. If you were a male executive, people assumed: fast cars, fast women. And that always bothered me, because when I found out who Richard Branson really was — married for over 38 years, faithfully, with two kids that he loves — and Jeffrey Katzenberg is a...
“There is no such thing as a marketing gimmick and there is no such thing as a machine — your machine is your fans, your gimmick is blatant honesty and communication with them.”
Such is the management philosophy of Scott “Scooter” Braun, the man who discovered international sensation Justin Bieber, launched Ariana Grande, signed Kanye West and single-handedly organized two massive benefits – Manchester’s “One Love” concert and the Hurricane Harvey telethon “Hand to Hand” – within four months of each other.
By the age of 30, Braun had become one of the most successful managers in the music business, and in the five years and some 20 clients since, has solidified his position as an entertainment powerhouse.
A native of Greenwich, CT who got his start in the business while attending college at Emory University – but mostly promoting parties – Braun ingratiated himself into Atlanta’s burgeoning hip-hop scene, befriending and later working for So So Def founder and Grammy-winning producer Jermaine Dupri (Janet Jackson, Mariah Carey). A sharp eye for music-branding opportunities would lead Braun to look towards Madison Ave., where he successfully negotiated sponsorships for Ludacris (with Showtime and Pontiac) and decided to venture out on his own, taking on a little-known rapper named Asher Roth and, in short order, finding untapped talent in a YouTube video of a then 12-year-old Justin Bieber.
Braun’s tenacity has opened many doors – be it Universal Music Group, which houses his label, SchoolBoy Records, and releases Bieber’s albums; Paramount Pictures, which partnered with Braun’s SB Projects for the No. 1 box office hit “Never Say Never;” or CBS, where the show “Scorpion” airs, for which Braun has an executive producer credit – but most fulfilling for the new father is philanthropy, and most concerning is the world that his two sons will inherit. It’s one reason why Braun campaigned actively for Hillary Clinton, a loss that’s still healing, and has also committed himself time and time again to causes that matter, from building schools to disaster relief. For someone who has boasted in the past, “I’ve never chased a dollar,” he’s brought many millions to the people who need it, and the while shoring up his own net worth.