How J-Lo and A-Rod will stay close despite love split to salvage multi-million dollar brand

THE split between Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez has cost her many things.

The chance to wear a wedding dress for the fourth time, the hope of a much-deserved happy ending after a stormy love life.

Then there’s the financial loss too. As showbiz relationships go, the Love Don’t Cost A Thing singer’s four-year union with baseball icon Alex, 45, known as A-Rod, was one of the more profitable.

They shared multimillion-dollar investments and business ventures, so not only will their break-up hit the 51-year-old singer and actress in the heart, but in her pocket too.

It is significant that their statement, released on Thursday, mentioned those very deals. It read: “We have realised we are better as friends and look forward to remaining so.

“We will continue to work together and support each other on our shared businesses and projects.”

The Sun reported just four weeks ago that a split was only a matter of time after rumours circulated about A-Rod’s friendship with American TV personality Madison LeCroy.

A source told us at the time: “Jennifer feels she just can’t trust Alex and she doesn’t want to be embarrassed any more.

"These latest cheating rumours are the final straw. Everyone knows she can do better and doesn’t deserve this.”

The couple presented a united front at the time and denied they were calling quits on their relationship, saying: “All reports are inaccurate.”

They also stated that they were “working through some things”. A big part of their appeal was as a couple

However, the source told us: “Those close to her would be really shocked if they stayed together through this.”

The power couple reportedly hired lawyers in a bid to unravel their complicated financial situation.

A source told US mag People: “They are tied in their business worlds so it’s not a cut-and-dried break-up. It’s taken a while for them to even think about untangling it all.”

Together, they have a five per cent stake in the health self-care company Hims & Hers, estimated to be worth around £58million.

They have also ploughed cash into trendy drinks firm Super Coffee, owning five per cent of the £174million company.

There have also been collaborations with fitness app Fitplan and a deal with sunglasses firm Quay Australia.

And on March 27, days after they denied the rumoured split, Alex announced on Instagram that they had “joined forces” with vitamin gummy company Goli Nutrition.

Then there is the couple’s property portfolio, including homes in New York and Miami, where they have a ten-bedroom, £24million mansion, intended as their family home, which they only bought in August.

Last year they offered £220million to buy the New York Mets baseball team, but were outbid by American billionaire Steve Cohen. They will no doubt now count that as a blessing.

One source told USA Today newspaper: “Everyone who works on the business side for the couple is mostly saying, ‘Thank God they didn’t buy the Mets’.”

While neither will be left penniless — J-Lo’s wealth is estimated at around £300million and his, as America’s best-paid baseball player, at £250million — they will no doubt suffer a hit.

Jim DeCicco, boss of Super Coffee, which Jennifer and Alex have a stake in, once said a big part of their appeal was that they were a couple.

A huge fan of Alex’s former club, the New York Yankees, Jim said: “The cool thing about them is that Jen is a global icon, Alex is one of the best baseball players to ever play the game and they are at a point in their career where they are shifting from their huge personal brand to being known for their business acumen.”

Her and Alex was meant to be the partnership that Jennifer had been waiting for.

From her first husband Ojani Noa, who tried to write a tell-all book about their 11-month marriage, to rapper P Diddy, who involved her in a gun arrest, and the cancelled wedding to Hollywood hunk Ben Affleck, J-Lo has had more than her fair share of heartache.

When she met Alex in 2005 at a baseball game she was still married to her third husband, singer Marc Anthony.

She described the encounter as a “weird electricity” and said it was “three to five seconds of looking at somebody right in their eyes, and getting stuck”.

Fate brought them together again in 2017, three years after Jennifer’s divorce from Marc, and Alex asked her out for dinner.

He had his history too, of course. The divorced sportsman had dated Charlie’s Angels star Cameron Diaz and another actress, Kate Hudson, and had been linked to Madonna and Demi Moore.

On his first date with Jennifer they discovered all the things they had in common.

Alex said: “We’re both Leos. We’re both from New York. We’re both Latino . . . and about 20 other things.”

Both were also parents, and J-Lo’s twins, Emme and Max, 13, soon became good friends with A-Rod’s girls, Natasha, 16, and Ella, 12, his daughters from his six-year marriage to Cynthia Scurtis.

When Cynthia and Alex divorced in 2008, she cited, among other things, “extra-marital affairs” which he requested was struck from court records.

A year earlier, the New York Post newspaper featured a front-page picture of him and a blonde stripper with the headline “Stray Rod”.

In the same year, Boston-based stripper-turned-hairdresser Candice Houlihan claimed she had a “two-night stand” with the athlete.

He has always denied all allegations of cheating. It was thoughts of their happy, blended family that kept Jennifer clinging on to the relationship, despite her fears that Alex had strayed.

A source told us: “The only reason they’ve stayed together through previous allegations is because her kids are really fond of Alex and she doesn’t want them to suffer.”

Pair publicly kissed and cuddled in January

But with Max and Emme getting older, Jennifer was also mindful of the gossip that was spreading.

The source said: “The last thing she wants is for them to read allegations about him online.”

Divorcee Madison, 30, who appears on a reality show about wealthy people in America’s Deep South called Southern Charm, was accused on the show by a co-star of being a “home wrecker” who was seeing an ex-Major League Baseball player.

Madison admitted privately messaging Alex but insisted: “I’ve tried to be as quiet as possible. I don’t want anything bad for his family or for mine. We are definitely innocent in this.”

Alex’s people claimed he had never “met or spoken to Madison”.

But in a further twist, a Southern Charm co-star, Shep Rose, claimed Madison had signed a non-disclosure agreement over their “relationship”.

While filming in the Caribbean four days ago, Jen was spotted without her £1.3million engagement ring.

Just 48 hours after Alex popped the question in 2019, one of his former team-mates, Jose Canseco, accused him of cheating on the Hustle actress by seeing his ex-wife, Jessica Sekely.

She came out to state the accusations were false. Glamorous J-Lo and A-Rod postponed their wedding twice during the pandemic, saying they would tie the knot “when the time is right”.

The pair kissed and cuddled in January at one of their last public appearances, US President Joe Biden’s inauguration.

The following month Alex posted pictures of the couple together in the Dominican Republic, where Jennifer is filming the romcom Shotgun Wedding.

She posted a different version of it, her arms wrapped around Alex’s waist and that megawatt smile an expression of pure contentment.

Before that, while her work forced them to be hundreds of miles apart, Alex captioned a throwback photo of the pair cuddled up together on a sofa: “Missing this girl.”

He also posted a beautiful black-and-white picture with Jennifer and his step-children on their birthday, writing: “I’m blessed to have you both in my life and look forward to watching you both continue to grow and do amazing things!”

Now, following their stark announcement on Thursday, that perfect photo album only stands as a reminder of what the pair have both lost.

Carving up celeb riches

SOME celeb couples really do have fame and fortune to match – so when they split, dividing the spoils can be a mighty challenge . . . 

KIM KARDASHIAN AND KANYE WEST: Reality TV will never be the same after Kim and Kanye confirmed their divorce in February.
While they both own businesses independently, rapper Kanye starred with his wife in Keeping Up With The Kardashians for many years, while Kim is thought to have earned £180million from her 13 years on the show, which ends this year. The couple’s combined fortune came to an estimated £1.5billion – but their pre-nup agreement will make splitting the assets a whole lot easier.

BRAD PITT AND ANGELINA JOLIE: Since Angelina filed for divorce in 2016, the film stars have yet to agree custody for their six kids.
However, one thing it seems they agree on is wine. They have remained business partners for Chateau Miraval, their French vineyard which produces top-end rosé. The couple bought the immaculate vineyard and 35-room mansion in the South of France for £43million in 2011.

HELENA BONHAM CARTER AND TIM BURTON: Before they split in 2014 after 13 years together, actress Helena starred in several films directed by her husband Tim, such as Corpse Bride, Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Sweeney Todd, Dark Shadows and Alice In Wonderland. But the movie power couple have not made a film together since Wonderland’s sequel Alice Through The Looking Glass in 2016.

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