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Hip-Hop Has Its First Billionaire

It's Jay-Z
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 3, 2019 12:30 PM CDT
In this Nov. 4, 2016, file photo, Jay Z performs during a campaign rally for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in Cleveland.   (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

(Newser) Forbes estimates that Jay-Z's fortune now "conservatively totals $1 billion," which is notable for a couple reasons: He's one of just "a handful" of those in showbiz who have become billionaires—and the first ever in the realm of hip-hop. (As Billboard explains, Dr. Dre didn't actually become a billionaire as some believed he did when he sold Beats to Apple for $3 billion; his net worth is estimated to be $850 million.)

Of course, Jay-Z's empire now encompasses a lot more than his own music. He has his own entertainment company; his own streaming service; a clothing line he started and then sold for $204 million; investments in art and real estate, including homes in Los Angeles, the Hamptons, and Tribeca; partnerships with liquor companies; and stakes in companies including Uber. "Crucially, he realized that he should build his own brands rather than promote someone else’s," Forbes notes. See the magazine's breakdown of his net worth here. (Read more Jay-Z stories.)

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