From a controversial past, to releasing multi-platinum albums, winning multiple awards and marrying Beyonce, Jay-Z can now add being a billionaire to his ever growing list of achievements.

Shawn Corey Carter, known by his stage name ‘Jay-Z’ has officially become a billionaire, according to an article by Forbes magazine. Jay-Z grew up in the Marcy Houses in Brooklyn, New York. He has often described ‘Marcy’ as a dangerous place of crime and crack cocaine abuse. Growing up in these circumstances didn’t stop Jay-Z from being what he is now, a billionaire and one the best rappers of all time.

Jay-Z released his debut album ‘Reasonable Doubt’ in 1996, through a label he founded himself ‘Roc-A-Fella records.’ ‘Reasonable Doubt’ put him on the map. He then went on to release 12 more platinum selling albums with ‘The Blueprint’ the most critically acclaimed, making him one the bestselling artists of all time.

From the start it wasn’t all rosey as it is now. Jay-Z wasn’t always a billionaire or married to Beyonce. In his lyrics Jay-Z claims to have sold crack cocaine and was shot at three times. But he rose above that and became highly successful in the music industry. What is his blueprint for success?

Jay-Z has made a lot investments throughout his career. He isn’t just a rapper. He founded a record label with a friend, Damon Dash and Kareem Burke. There was bad blood between them and Jay sold his stake in the label and went on to create his current label Roc Nation.

Roc Nation signed arguably the best singer to debut in the 2000s, Rihanna. Roc Nation branched out to include different divisions, most prominent is Roc Nation Sports, a sports management division of the label; the division also manages one of the greatest NBA players of all time, Kevin Durant.

Jay-Z also bought a Norwegian media technology company, Aspiro, which helped him launch a subscription based streaming service, TIDAL. He has made other investments from property to liquor.

Many have described Jay-Z’s life as the real American Dream coming from nothing to being a billionaire. He is now one of the world’s few black billionaires and one of even fewer in the entertainment business. Swizz Beatz, an American music producer has been quoted saying “A guy that looks like us, sounds like us, loves us, made it to something that we always felt that was above us. If he’s a billionaire now, imagine what he’s about to be.”


Tell us: Does Jay-Z’s story inspire you?