10 Hip-Hop Artists Who’ve Made Big Bank Outside Of Music
Some of your favorite musicians are worth more than you think and it's not because of their lyrics.
July 02, 2021 at 1:38 am
The idea that millionaires are that way because they've garnered multiple streams of income has never been more true for the following rappers, who have found incredible success away from the studio. We may have been introduced to them via a chart-topping debut single or legendary song, but they became household names by lending their likeness to various brand campaigns in investing in enterprises across various industries.
From Swizz Beatz to Nicki Minaj, these 10 artists who significantly increased their net worth outside of music.
1. Swizz Beatz
Quarantine concerts were indefinitely changed when Swizz Beatz and Timbaland came up with Verzuz TV. Before pitting some of the industry's best artists against each other for some friendly competition, he earned his $150 million fortune through a multimillion dollar partnership with Bacardi and his current role as sitting Vice President of Sports Style Marketing, Design, and Brand Music Development for sportswear juggernaut Reebok.
2. Dr. Dre
Serena Williams, LeBron James and Simone Biles. Besides being incredibly talented in their respective sport, they also all have endorsement deals with Beats by Dre, and they can thank Dr. Dre for that. The former NWA member-turned-businessman released his first brand of Beats by Dre headphones in 2008.
Six years later, Apple acquired the company for $3 billion. Because Dr. Dre owned 25% of the company, he consequently took home therefore they each earned $500 million from the deal per Forbes. His net worth is valued at nearly $800 million.
As his infamous verse in the "Diamonds from Sierra Leone" track goes: "I'm not a businessman; I'm a business, man."
Since his debut album 25 years ago, JAY-Z has proven the aforementioned with every career move. Not only does Mr. Carter own equity in SpaceX, Oatly, Ethos, Uber and Sweetgreen, but the father of three co-founded the the 40/40 Club franchise, launched sports management firm Roc Nation Sports in 2013 and of course, acquired music streaming platform Tidal through a $56 million deal in 2015 to become the majority owner.
4. Kanye West
5. Rick Ross
Rick Ross' projects don't amount to those of the aforementioned artists, but the 45-year-old is just getting started.
According to Complex, Ricky Rozay owns 25 of the 1,500 WingStop locations across the country. The popular fast casual eatery is also going virtual. In an effort to solve the increasing shortage of chicken wings, his new restaurant Thighstop features 10 flavors of chicken thigh available exclusively on the brand's website and DoorDash.
This list would be incomplete without Diddy, who essentially normalized getting a side hustle.
The New York native's commercial endeavors began in 1998 with the release of his clothing line Sean John. Diddy also helped develop vodka brand Ciroc in 2007, pocketing 50% off the profits in the process. Finally, the father of six owns a major capital share in RevoltTV, a music cable platform committed to highlighting creators of this generation.
Drake does far more than supply Instagram captions.
The "God's Plan" crooner launched his own spirits brand Virginia Black Whiskey in 2016, which can now be found in liquor stores worldwide. Drake founded his own record label OVO Sound in 2012 and they represent the likes of KashDoll and PartyNextDoor. In 2017, the label joined forces with Warner Brothers
8. 50 Cent
50 Cent was destined to be a mastermind businessman after he worked out a deal with Vitamin Water for a minority stake in the country in return for being their official spokesman and lending his likeness for the "Formula 50" drink. Although the "21 Questions" rapper sold it in 2017 for $60 million, 50 once owned minority stake in Effen Vodka. To further add to his resume, in 2018 he signed a massive partnership with cable network Starz, the home of his incredibly successful series "Power."
9. Snoop Dogg
If it has to do with cannabis, expect Snoop Dogg to have his name attached. In 2015, he invested in Eaze, a California-based company committed to delivering medical marijuana to doorsteps in 10 minutes or less. Additional projects include Merry Jane, a digital media platform that covers all topics relevant to the cannabis industry. The "D,O, double G" also dipped his toe in the world of plant-based food, working alongside Beyond Meat to help convince people to adopt a vegan lifestyle.
10. Nicki Minaj
Nicki Minaj is no stranger to making money. Her chart-topping albums and features have definitely contributed to her more than $80 million fortune. The world's richest female rapper lasted just one season on American Idol as a judge but Nicki still took home $12 million for her services. Other deals that have added millions to the "Starships" rapper's bank account include a sold-out collaboration with MAC Cosmetics and Pepsi.