Scooter Braun, music manager to stars, announces retirement

"A father first. A CEO second. A manager no more." 

These were the words written Monday by Scooter Braun, one of the most recognizable names in the music business, known for representing artists like Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande. 

He revealed he would be retiring from management to focus on his family and on being CEO of music and media company HYBE America. 

"23 years. 23 years. That’s how long I have been a music manager," Braun wrote in a nearly 1,400-word statement, adding, "23 years ago a 19 year old kid started managing an artist named Cato in Atlanta, GA and my journey began. Along the way I have had so many experiences I could never have dreamt of. I have been blessed to have had a "Forrest Gump"-like life while witnessing and taking part in the journeys of some of the most extraordinarily talented people the world has ever seen. I’m constantly pinching myself and asking "how did I get here?"


US businessman Scooter Braun (L) and Canadian singer Justin Bieber arrive for YouTube Originals' "Justin Bieber: Seasons" premiere at the Regency Bruin Theatre in Los Angeles on January 2020. (Credit: LISA O'CONNOR/AFP via Getty Images)

He continued: "And after 23 years this chapter as a music manager has come to an end." 

In the late 2000s, Braun quickly became one of the most successful managers in the music industry, beginning with Justin Bieber and continuing with several other stars including Carly Rae Jepsen, Tori Kelly, Demi Lovato, Kid Laroi, Dan + Shay and many others. He also served as a longtime business partner with Usher. 

Scooter Braun's feud with Taylor Swift

But his reputation took a hit in 2018 after his acquisition of the rights to Taylor Swift’s first six albums through his purchase of Big Machine Record Group, which she claimed was underhanded. 

Braun, she alleges, got two clients, including Bieber, to bully her online about a leaked and illegally recorded snippet of a phone call she had with Kardashian. She also referenced when West, a Braun client at the time, organized a "revenge porn music video which strips my body naked."

She wrote that Braun had "stripped her" of her life’s work that she "wasn’t given an opportunity to buy."

Braun later sold the catalog to Shamrock Holdings for some $300 million and then sold Ithaca Holdings to HYBE for a whopping $1.05 billion, according to Variety. 

RELATED: Taylor Swift pens scathing post about Scooter Braun

Last year, rumors circulated online that Bieber was leaving Braun. In the days that followed, media outlets began reporting that some of Braun’s other hype-profile clients like Grande and Lovato were also parting ways with him.

Braun said in his statement that his silence was his attempt to take "the high road," adding, "But for the last 3 years I have begun to feel that taking the high road has created confusion and ambiguity as to who we are." 

Braun cited members of his team that will now handle the artist management responsibilities.

"Yes, this chapter has come to an end. But the great Berry Gordy once told me ‘young man, it never ends the way you wanted, but it doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.’ That wisdom has proven to be correct. I never saw how this chapter would end, hell, I never even saw it happening. But it did. And I will cherish every moment of it. I made my plan… but it turns out I like God’s plan better. Cheers!" 

This story was reported from Los Angeles. The Associated Press contributed.