Irving Azoff is in talks to manage Nicki Minaj, sources confirm to Billboard.
The 36-year old hip-hop superstar split with longtime managers Cortez Bryant and Gee Roberson of the Blueprint Group and Maverick Management in mid-April and has been seeking new representation.
Minaj released her fourth studio album, Queen, last year, and became the first female artist with 100 career entries on the Billboard Hot 100 chart last November.
Roberson and Bryant, co-CEOs of the Blueprint Group, had repped Minaj through the majority of her career, and have also managed Lil Wayne, G-Eazy and Rich The Kid, among others. The Atlanta-based management group partnered with Maverick when the conglomerate was formed in 2014.
Should the move, which Variety first reported, come to fruition, it represents a change in Minaj’s feelings towards the legendary manager. Last August, on an episode of her Queen Radio show, she awarded Azoff her “c***sucker of the day” award, accusing Azoff of attempting to disparage her NICKIHNDRXX tour. “There are so many powerful people in this industry who have tried to stop me from speaking up. One thing I won’t do is let people bully me into a corner,” Minaj said. ”This Irving man allegedly launched a smear campaign against my tour. He allegedly contacted people in the media to say negative things about my tour.” The North American leg of the tour was subsequently canceled.
On April 14, Minaj appeared as a special guest during Ariana Grande’s headlining set at Coachella. She also appears alongside G-Eazy as a guest on Chris Brown’s new single “Wobble Up.” The pair are rumored to be touring together this fall.
A representative for Azoff declined comment. A label representative for Minaj did not immediately respond for a request for comment.