Tuesday, September 4, 2007
NO. 4 - THE RICHEST PEOLE IN HIP HOP
Dollar Status - $325 Million (R2.2 billion)
Portfolio – Phat Farm, Baby Phat,Rush Communications, Hip Hop Summit Network and others
By Kopano Marumo
You can’t talk hip hop money and business acumen, without mentioning Russell “Rush” Simmons.
He went from being a drug-pushing, hip hop block party and club promoter and even a songwriter to being the co-founder of the Def Jam label (where the likes of LL Cool J, DMX, Beastie Boys, Red Man, Method Man, JA Rule, Slick Rick, Ludacris, Public Enemy rose to prominence).
Simmons contributed immensely to the initial hip hop movements. In the 80’s, he quit college to become a full-time manager of his younger brother’s crew Run-DMC. By remaining true to the cause and being an awesome marketer for hip hop, he deserves every cent.
His communications company is the largest black-owned business in the industry. He launched Phat Farm and Baby Phat clothing labels, which he has since pawned for a hefty $120 million. He is also dabbling in film production (The Nutty Professor), comedy and poetry HBO TV shows. He sold Def-Jam for a handsome $100 million in 1999.
He became vice-chairman of BET.com after selling 360hiphop.com to the website. He also enjoys lucrative endorsement deals with Motorola and has established a jewelry company, Simmons Jewelry, alongside his former model wife Kimora-Lee.
If you’re interested in knowing how this ‘Godfather of Hip Hop’ made his fortune, be sure to cop a copy of his latest best-selling motivational book Do You! 12 Laws to Access the Power in You to Achieve Happiness and Success.
The book features a foreword by none other fellow New York tycoon, Donald Trump.