What is Jay-Z’s Net Worth?
Jay-Z is an American rapper, producer, songwriter and business man who has a net worth of $1.3 billion. Jay-Z is considered to be among the most influential hip hop artists of all time. After co-founding Roc-A-Fella Records in 1995, he went on to have a hugely successful music career with such hit albums as “Reasonable Doubt,” “The Blueprint,” “The Black Album,” and “4:44.” Among his many other endeavors, Jay-Z founded the entertainment agency Roc Nation and the luxury sports bar chain the 40/40 Club.
Jay-Z has earned his net worth through his career in the music industry, and as an extremely successful entrepreneur. J In his own words, he’s “not businessman, he’s a business… man”. In any given year he earns $70-80 million. Jay-Z and his wife Beyonce Knowles have a combined net worth of $1.8 billion. They first cracked the combined billion dollar fortune mark in July 2014. Jay-Z first became a billionaire on his own in June 2019 thanks to a vast business empire that today includes record sales, touring, merchandise, endorsements and investments like Armand de Brignac champagne, Tidal and D’Usse cognac. He makes investments through Marcy Venture Partners which is named after the housing project where Jay grew up.
Jay-Z Net Worth Milestones
- In February 2021 Sold 50% of Armand de Brignac to LVMH at a $640m valuation
- In February 2021 Sold Tidal to Square for $300m
- First Became a Billionaire in 2020
- Has earned north of $750m in his career before investments
- Owns equity in SpaceX, Oatly, Ethos, Uber and Sweetgreen
- With Beyonce, co-owns an art collection worth at least $100 million
- Co-owns, with Beyonce, at least $150m in global real estate
We first added Jay to Celebrity Net Worth back in September 2009 with a net worth of $300 million. By September 2012 his net worth had jumped to $475 million. He crossed the $500 million mark for the first time in 2013. By 2015 he had topped the $600 million mark. Between 2015 and 2019 his net worth sky rocketed thanks to the various business ventures we detail below. As of January 2019 he was worth at least $930 million. In June 2019 Jay’s net worth officially crossed into billionaire status.
Jay-Z was born Shawn Carter in Brooklyn, New York in December 1969. He was one of four children, and his mother raised the family alone after his father chose to leave them all and disappear. Jay grew up in the Marcy Houses, and moved from school to school. The Marcy Houses were so notoriously dangerous that the entire neighborhood eventually had to be shut down.
Carter was educated at Eli Whitney High School until it closed, after which he attended George Westinghouse Career and Technical Education High School, but never actually graduated.
At one of his high schools, Jay’s classmates included two young men who would go on to become The Notorious B.I.G. and Busta Rhymes.
Carter developed his interest in music thanks to his mother, who bought him a boombox for his birthday. He subsequently began writing lyrics and freestyling, and appeared on some tracks by other hip hop artists. It was during this time he adopted the stage name Jay-Z.
Rise to Fame in the 90s
Unable to secure a record deal, Jay-Z co-founded the independent label Roc-A-Fella Records in 1995 with Damon Dash and Kareem Burke. He was then able to get a distribution deal with Priority Records, leading to the release of his debut studio album in 1996: “Reasonable Doubt.” Well-received by critics, the album peaked at number 23 on the Billboard 200.
Jay-Z’s next album was 1997’s “In My Lifetime, Vol. 1,” distributed via Def Jam. A much bigger hit than his first album, it debuted at number three on the Billboard 200. The follow-up, 1998’s “Vol. 2… Hard Knock Life,” was even more commercially successful, debuting at number one on the Billboard 200 and spawning one of Jay-Z’s biggest hit singles, “Hard Knock Life (Ghetto Anthem).” Closing out the decade, Jay-Z released “Vol. 3… Life and Times of S. Carter,” his second album to debut atop the Billboard 200.
Stabbing of Lance Rivera
In late 1999, Jay-Z stabbed record executive Lance Rivera in the stomach at the Times Square nightclub the Kit Kat Klub, believing that Rivera was behind the bootlegging of his recently released album. He eventually pleaded guilty to third-degree assault and took a three-year probation sentence.
Solo Studio Albums in the 21st Century
Jay-Z commenced the new millennium with his fifth studio album, “The Dynasty: Roc La Familia,” and his third to debut at number one on the Billboard 200. He notched a fourth consecutive number-one debut with “The Blueprint,” which came out only hours before the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. The album is also notable for serving as the breakthrough for its producers Kanye West and Just Blaze. In 2002, Jay-Z released a follow-up entitled “The Blueprint 2: The Gift & the Curse,” a double-album that became his fifth consecutive number-one debut. It launched the hit singles “Excuse Me Miss” and “03 Bonnie & Clyde.”
Jay-Z continued his string of monster successes with 2003’s “The Black Album”; supported by the hit singles “99 Problems,” “Change Clothes,” and “Dirt off Your Shoulder,” it ended up becoming his bestselling album of the decade. Although he announced his retirement not long after that, Jay-Z made a comeback in 2006 with his album “Kingdom Come.” Following that was “American Gangster,” named after the eponymous Ridley Scott film. Jay-Z then released “The Blueprint 3,” his 11th album to make it to number one on the Billboard 200, setting a new record for a solo artist. His subsequent albums have included “Magna Carta Holy Grail” and “4:44.”
Jay-Z has had many high-profile collaborations with other artists during his career. In 1999, he achieved his first chart-topping song in the US with “Heartbreaker,” a collaboration with Mariah Carey. A few years later, Jay-Z released his first collaborative studio album with R. Kelly, “The Best of Both Worlds.” In 2004, the two released their second collaborative album, “Unfinished Business.” The same year, Jay-Z released “Collision Course,” a collaborative remix EP with the rock band Linkin Park. Later, in 2011, he had one of his biggest career hits with “Watch the Throne,” a collaboration with Kanye West. Jay-Z’s subsequent collaborative albums include 2018’s “Everything is Love,” which he recorded with his wife Beyoncé under the name the Carters. He and Beyoncé had previously collaborated on a number of songs.
Marriage to Beyonce
In 2002, Jay-Z worked with Beyonce in the song, “03-Bonnie & Clyde,” as well as her hit single, “Crazy in Love,” and “That’s How You Like it.” He made appearances in several of Beyonce performances. At some point they began dating and in 2008, Beyonce and Jay-Z married. They welcomed their first child, Blue Ivy, on January 8th 2012. On June 13, 2017 Beyonce gave birth to twins, a daughter named Rumi and a son named Sir.
Beyond being a famous rapper, Jay-Z has been prominent in the music industry in executive positions. He was the president of Def Jam Recordings from 2005 to 2008, and founded the entertainment agency Roc Nation in the latter year.
In 1999 Jay and Damon Dash co-created the clothing line Rocawear. By 2000, the company was generating $50 million in revenue per year. At its peak Rocawear generated $700 million in annual revenue. Damon was removed from the company in 2006 after a falling out with Jay.
In March 2007 Jay sold the rights to Rocawear to Iconix Brand Group for $204 million. He maintains a small stake in the business today and is involved in the brand’s marketing, development and licensing.
In 2003 Jay founded the luxury sports bar chain the 40/40 Club. From 2003 to 2013, Jay-Z was part-owner of the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets. Among his other ventures, he acquired the champagne brand Armand de Brignac and the technology company Aspiro; launched the digital lifestyle magazine Life + Times; and created the cannabis line Monogram.
In March 2015, Jay became the majority owner of music streaming service Tidal through a $56 million acquisition. In March 2021, Tidal was acquired by Square (now known as Block) for $300 million. He and Square/Twitter founder Jack Dorsey had been reportedly negotiating for months before the deal was announced.
In February 2021 he sold 50% of Arman de Brignac to LVMH.
Over the years he endorsed a number of major brands including Chevy, Budweiser, Armadale Vodka and Hewlett Packard. He is the co-brand director of Budweiser Select and collaborates with the company on marketing and ad development.
Brooklyn Nets Investment
Jay purchased a small stake in the the Nets back in January 2004 for $1 million. He helped orchestrate the team’s move from New Jersey to Brooklyn with majority owner, Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov. By the time Jay sold his stake in the team, he had also bought a minority stake in the Barclay’s Center arena. He had to sell the stake in the team for $2.35 million when he launched his sports management business Roc Nation Sports. He was required to sell his stake in the team due to conflict of interest rules in the NBA but he was allowed to keep his stake in the arena. Perhaps not surprisingly, there is a 40/40 Club in the Barclay’s Center.
Roc Nation Sports
As we mentioned previously, Jay owns sports management company Roc Nation Sports. Launched in 2013, they have negotiated deals for many major athletes across several professional leagues.
In 2014, Jay became the majority owner in champagne company Armand de Brignac. He had previously been a paid endorser of the brand, but ultimately decided to buy the company out completely. It has been reported that he owns a minority stake in the English soccer team Arsenal. He invested in a real estate partnership that reportedly is building hotels and condominiums around New York City. His first record deal with Live Nation was worth $150 million. In 2017 he signed a second deal with Live Nation that is worth $200 million over 10 years.
- Jay’s investment in Armand de Brignac is worth $310 million.
- He has at least $220 million worth of of cash and other liquid investments.
- His investment in D’Usse is worth $100 million.
- His music catalogue is worth at least $75 million.
- His art collection is worth $70 million.
Jay-Z Career Earnings By Year
Beyonce and Jay-Z own an extremely valuable portfolio of real estate assets around the world. Here’s a highly reel of the homes we KNOW about –
- In 2008 they purchased a 7-bedroom mansion on the ultra-exclusive Indian Creek Island in Miami for $8 million. They sold this home in 2010 for $9.3 million.
- Beyonce owns a $2.6 million home in New Orleans.
- Jay-Z owns a $10 million apartment in NYC that he bought solo in 2004 for $6.85 million.
- In 2017 Beyonce sold her long-time NYC condo for $9.95 million. She bought the condo in 2005 for $5 million.
- In 2017 Beyonce and Jay-Z together paid $26 million for a mansion in the Hamptons called Pond House.
- In 2017, Beyonce and Jay-Z together paid $88 million for an insane 30,000 square foot mansion in Bel Air, California. Public records show that they took out a $52 million mortgage when they bought the house. Using the mortgage rates that were available at the time, B + J are likely paying north of $250,000 per month on their mortgage for the home that has a full basketball court, 2-acres of land, a 15 car garage, media room, multiple pools and bulletproof windows.
- Together they own a $4 million private island in the Bahamas.
When you total it all up, Beyonce and Jay-Z own at least $150 million worth of real estate in the United States that we can find via public record searches. It’s possible they own more real estate abroad or other properties hidden behind LLCs.
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