Russell Simmons’ All Def Digital President Spins Massive Layoffs Rumor as Part of a ‘Strategic Deal’

Several months ago, in an apparent attempt to avoid prosecution over multiple sexual assaults, hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons fled to Indonesia.

The country doesn’t have an existing extradition treaty with the U.S.  This means if found guilty, Simmons can continue to hide in the Asian country.

Late last week, a report came to light.  Completing Simmons’ escape from the U.S., All Def Digital (ADD) quietly laid off employees en masse.

As expected, Simmons’ parent company, Rush Communications, hasn’t shared information about the massive layoffs.  In 2017, the embattled hip-hop mogul stepped down from his role at ADD.  Simmons explained that he wanted to start new ventures.  This only happened, however, after multiple women accused him of sexual assault.

The Def Jam co-founder has vehemently denied the sexual assault allegations.  He purports to have never been abusive or violent toward any women.  Simmons further explained that his decision to step down from managing ADD’s day-to-day operations was to avoid “being a distraction.”

Prior to Simmons’ departure, ADD CEO Sanjay Sharma departed to start a new digital media venture.  Osman Eralp assumed the day-to-day duties of the brand.

Now, fighting back against the layoff reports, All Def Digital has used a rather poor PR strategy.

So, you’ve ‘reorganized’ your company.  But, don’t you need employees to run – or even sell – your company?

In an attempt to spin the massive layoffs, All Def Digital, a youth-oriented digital entertainment company, has issued a new statement.

ADD President and CEO Chris Blackwell dismissed last week’s report, stating Simmons’ company won’t shut down.

We’re reorganizing in advance of a strategic deal.

In PR talk, this means the company has struggled to turn a profit and find a potential buyer.  So, they’ve had to resort to layoffs to keep the company afloat.

In short, All Def Digital is running out of cash.

Blackwell also didn’t provide additional details about the “strategic deal.”

Since fleeing to Indonesia, Russell Simmons hasn’t had an ownership interest in ADD.


Featured image by Coco Curranski (CC by 2.0).