Diddy Is Dethroned as World’s Richest Rapper
With some $900 million in assets, Jay Z tops the annual Forbes Five list for the first time.Photo: Getty Images Music News Jay-Z
Every year, Forbes compiles a list of the world’s five richest rappers, and every year, Diddy comes out on top. In 2017, we reported that the Bad Boy Records chief was sitting on some $820 million in assets thanks mostly to lucrative deals with Ciroc vodka maker Diageo (he has an equity stake) and tequila brand DeLeon, as well as partnerships with TV network Revolt and water brand Aquahydate. In fact, he was No. 1 by a sizable margin.
But no more. The 2018 results are in and Diddy, despite increasing his net worth over the past year, has been leapfrogged by Jay Z, who boosted his own nest egg from $810 million to $900 million in 2017, earning himself the mantle of World’s Richest Rapper—which makes him the world’s richest musician, period—for the first time since Forbes began counting in 2011. According to the report, Jay made his move thanks to the rising value of his holdings in Armand de Brignac Champagne and D’Ussé cognac, plus his ownership stakes in Roc Nation and Tidal.
Coming in third again is Dr. Dre, with $770 million, thanks in large part to the swelling value of Apple’s $3 billion buyout of Beats in 2014. But Forbes also notes that Dre is “in line to receive a slug of Apple stock this summer worth well over $100 million; depending on the tech giant’s share price at the time, he could leapfrog Diddy and Jay-Z when that happens.”
The Forbes Five list compiles its list by “looking at past earnings, valuing current holdings, leafing through financial documents and talking to analysts, attorneys, managers, other industry players and even some of the moguls themselves to find the details.”