Jay-Z has been named hip-hop’s first billionaire.
The ’99 Problems’ hitmaker’s various assets and business endeavours – including a $70 million stake in Uber, ownership of streaming service Tidal and Roc Nation sports management, a $70 million art collection, $50 million in real estate, investments in various alcohol brands, and his $75 million music catalogue – have made him the richest rapper in the world, according to financial bible Forbes.
The publication noted: “It’s clear that Jay-Z has accumulated a fortune that conservatively totals $1 billion, making him one of only a handful of entertainers to become a billionaire – and the first hip-hop artist to do so.”
The 49-year-old star’s financial feat has been hailed a a “blueprint” for “hip-hop culture” by his friend Swizz Beatz.
He said: “It’s bigger than hip-hop. It’s the blueprint for our culture. A guy that looks like us, sounds like us, loves us, made it to something that we always felt that was above us.”
And Swizz thinks Jay’s success can only continue.
He added: “If he’s a billionaire now, imagine what he’s about to be. Because he’s only just starting.”
Jay – who has daughter Blue Ivy, seven, and 22-month-old twins Rumi and Sir with wife Beyonce – previously vowed to take his success to the “next level”.
Speaking in 2005, when he was worth around $350 million, he said: “Most times rappers end up broke or nowhere.
“It’s time for someone to take it to the next level, to become an executive and open the doors for the culture.”
In 2014, Dr. Dre claimed to be the first billionaire in hip-hop after selling his Beats Music brand to Apple, but while it’s estimated the deal saw his net worth rise to around $1.1 billion, taxes eventually dropped it below the $1 billion mark.