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Diddy Crowned  Hip-Hop’s New Billionaire as Kanye Drops on List of 2022’s Wealthiest Artists

Sean “Diddy” Combs has officially entered the billionaire club. Forbes named Jay-Z hip-hop’s first billionaire in 2019 — highlighting his $1 billion net worth. Kanye West joined the list in 2020 due to his Yeezy-Adidas deal, which reportedly accounted for $1.5 billion of his net worth. As Finurah previously reported, Ye recently lost that deal and others, dropping his net worth from $2 billion to $500 million.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MAY 15: Sean “Diddy” Combs attends the 2022 Billboard Music Awards at MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 15, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Bryan Steffy/WireImage)

According to former Forbes editor Zack O’Malley Greenberg’s report, Diddy is officially hip-hop’s third and newest billionaire. His net worth is an estimated $1 billion.

Greenburg used his “decade-plus of experience covering the business of hip-hop” to analyze every asset in each artist’s portfolio.

“Diddy becomes the third billionaire minted by hip-hop, surging past Ye on the strength of several assets that have weathered the pandemic remarkably well,” he wrote last week. 

He continued, “The value of his incredibly resilient Cîroc partnership with Diageo, which functions like an equity stake while creating cash flows for Diddy in the neighborhood of $60 million annually, continues to account for the bulk of his fortune.”

Inside Diddy’s Wealth

Many assumed the Bad Boy CEO’s wealth mainly came from his music catalog or his television and media company, Revolt. In 2007, he inked a 50/50 multi-year deal to market the Ciroc vodka brand that has netted him millions. But his wealth is also drawn from ventures like DeLeón tequila, which he co-owns. He also has investments in startup like Aquahydrate Alkaline Water and he owns a multi-million-dollar art collection. On top of this, Combs has also had a lucrative solo music career as a recording artist himself. 

Diddy also created the successful clothing line Sean John in 1988, eventually reaching annual retail sales of around $450 million in 2016, according to Women’s Wear Daily. That same year, Diddy sold a 90 percent stake in the company to Global Brands for an estimated $70 million. In 2021, Diddy bought back Sean John for $7.5 million from the brand’s bankrupt owner.

Diddy, or Brother Love, as he refers to himself, previously came close to reaching billionaire status in 2017 after Forbes reported his net worth at $820 million. Jay-Z made the list that year at No. 2 with an estimated $810 million.

West’s Losses, Diddy’s Gains?

West lost $400 million due to the end of his Adidas deal but he may likely still receive 15 percent in royalties. He still owns the Yeezy trademark, but the shoe designs are considered Adidas‘ intellectual property.

Without his nine-figure Adidas deal, West still has quite a bit of wealth in his music catalog and other companies. The rapper owns several real estate properties, including his childhood home in Chicago. He also holds a 5 percent stake in ex-wife Kim Kardashian’s $3.2 billion shape-wear line, Skims.  

Greenburg believes West is headed for financial trouble if this path of losing deals continues. He believes the damage could “potentially” cause him to “sell or take out loans against his major assets.”

“In any case, with nearly all his wealth tied up in highly illiquid holdings, West could be headed for a cash crunch if he continues his current trajectory, potentially forcing him to sell or take out loans against his major assets,” he explained. “I also wouldn’t be shocked to see him revive Yeezy with a right-wing sporting goods company or an overseas brand with less to lose than Adidas.”

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