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Jay-Z Has Become Rap's First Billionaire Without A Blueprint

A legendary achievement from a legendary emcee and businessman

"Ain't no such thing as an ugly billionaire, I'm cute," Jay-Z rapped on "Family Feud" from his 2017 album, 4:44. He was speaking things into existence, of course — Jay-Z, the rap conglomerate and business mastermind, with eight, maybe nine zeroes to his net worth. He had the millions, but he didn't quitehave that billion.

But in 2019, it's a different game. It's now official: Jay-Z has become rap's first billionaire. And more importantly, Jay-Z has become one of the most handsome men in America. Take that, Idris Elba.

The news comes from a Forbes cover story that the rapper's fortune "conservatively totals $1 billion, making him one of only a handful of entertainers to become a billionaire – and the first hip-hop artist to do so."

The article then gives a brief breakdown of some of his massive financial empire, involving "liquor, art, real estate (homes in Los Angeles, the Hamptons, Tribeca) and stakes in companies like Uber." His net worth is then calculated based on his stakes in companies and his income. There's $310 million wrapped up in Armand de Brignac, $220 million in what the story calls "cash and investments," $100 million in his cognac, D'Ussé, $100 million in Tidal, $75 million in Roc Nation, $75 million in his music catalog, $70 million in his art collection, and $50 million in real estate. That's a lot of damn zeroes.

Jay-Z reopened Webster Hall in New York with a special show featuring Nas and Cam'ron in April. His last release was Everything Is Love with Beyoncé in 2018. With this kind of fortune, it's safe to say that Jay-Z doesn't need to release any more music. But he will because he loves the craft.