UNITED STATES: The United States’ youngest self-made billionaire woman did not grow up in a Manhattan high rise or the Hollywood Hills. Instead, Rihanna made her fortune through her music and business ventures.
For the third year, the 34-year-old singer and Fenty Beauty CEO were named to Forbes’ annual list of America’s richest self-made women.
She came in 21st place overall and is the list’s only billionaire under 40. Rihanna’s $1.4 billion net worth stems partly from her successful music career. The majority comes from her three retail businesses: Fenty Beauty, Fenty Skin, and Savage X Fenty.
According to Bloomberg, Savage X Fenty lingerie worked with advisors on an IPO worth $3 billion. Rihanna holds 30% of that company. She also owns a piece of Fenty Beauty, expected to generate $550 million in revenue by 2020. LVMH, a French luxury fashion conglomerate, owns the company’s other half.
The figures are impressive, but Rihanna has stated that she is not concerned with valuations and accolades. Rihanna told The New York Times’ T Magazine in 2019 that reaching financial milestones would “not stop me from working” because she never intended to make a fortune.
The nine-time Grammy Award winner also stated that she intends to donate the money to worthwhile causes. “My money is never for me; it’s always with the hope of helping someone else,” she explained. “The world can convince you that the wrong things are priorities, and it can make you miss the core of life, what it means to be alive.”
Rihanna established the Clara Lionel Foundation for Philanthropy in 2012 (CLF). The website aims to “support and fund ground-breaking education and climate resilience initiatives.”
One of its first initiatives, launched a year after the foundation’s inception raised $60 million for HIV/AIDS-affected women and children through sales of the singer’s lipstick line with MAC Cosmetics. In addition, CLF partnered with Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey’s #SmartSmall initiative in January to donate $15 million to 18 different climate justice organisations.
According to the CLF website, the funds will go to organisations “focused on and led by women, youth, Black, Indigenous, people of colour, and LGBTQIA+ communities” in the United States and the Caribbean.
“Much of the work at the [CLF] is rooted in the understanding that climate disasters, which are increasing in frequency and intensity, do not impact all communities equally, with communities of colour and island nations bearing the brunt of climate change,” Rihanna said in a January statement.
Kim Kardashian, 41, is the next youngest billionaire on Forbes’ list, with a net worth of $1.8 billion. Kardashian and her sister Kylie Jenner, who, at the age of 24, is the list’s youngest non-billionaire, with a net worth of $600 million.
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