As hip-hop celebrates its 50th anniversary, the world is experiencing a new phase of generational wealth emerging from the culture. While many are leaving their children’s money in their will or setting up trusts to start their lives, some are setting up family businesses with their offspring, participating in the $24.2 million earned each year in the United States by family-owned businesses.
Research shows that family businesses are important to the American economy, making up 64 percent of the Gross Domestic Product. Now some rappers are putting their children on with ventures that potentially could set them up for life.
Jadaakiss and Family’s Kiss Café
One of rap music’s most revered emcees, Jadakiss, whose real name is Jason Phillips, has stepped from behind the mic to start a business with his son, Jaewon Phillips, and his father, Bob Phillips. In 2022, The Lox member launched Kiss Café as a venture where the three Phillip men could work together in the coffee industry.
The patriarch of the family actually started working in the industry in 1977, according to the brand’s website. In 2002, the elder Phillips was named CEO of Caturra Corp., an importing and trading firm for international green coffee, according to Ebony Magazine, and is transferring much of his knowledge into the business with his son and grandson Jaewon, who has been working on the business since he graduated from Clark Atlanta University in 2018.
The industry is lucrative since coffee is the second-largest traded commodity in the world. With their first offering being Beijo, an Arabica blend sourced from Central America, the Phillips men seek to make their mark.
Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Jaden Smith‘s Just Water
One of Hollywood’s most notable couples, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith have been celebrated for supporting their children’s dreams and helping them explore career paths. The world mostly knows about Willow and Jaden’s careers in film, music, and modeling and Trey’s success as a DJ; few know that the youngest son is a serial entrepreneur.
Jaden, in his late teens, started the Misfit clothing brand with a few friends. However, now, as a 24-year-old, he is enjoying a partnership with his celebrity parents.
The actor-turned-rapper founded JUST Water, the eco-friendly company, in 2015. His parents, Smith and Pinkett Smith stepped up to support him, investing money into the venture and even stepping up to promote.
What makes the water company special is its focus on sustainability. The family has produced a product that is 100 percent spring water and has packaged it in a plant-based paper carton that is made up of 82 percent renewable materials that can be refillable and recyclable.
Rick Ross and William L. Roberts III
One of Miami rapper and mogul Rick Ross’ signature hits is called “The Boss.” That’s because the businessman has figured out how to make money in multiple industries: music, publishing, real estate, beauty and skin care fast food and more.
As the lyrics to a hit single by the executive indicate, the “Every day I’m hustling” artist has set out to inspire that same fire in his children, starting with his teenage son William L. Roberts III.
For his 16th birthday, a milestone birthday when most kids would get sneakers or hand-me-down cars, Tre got his own Wingstop franchise.
Rozay, who owns at least 25 different restaurants throughout the country, gifted his son his own franchise. He made the announcement on his Instagram, saying, “Everyone wish my son @mmgbigbank HAPPY 16th BIRTHDAY !!! Today he became the owner of his 1st @wingstop franchise. Your now officially a BOSS !!! Keep Going.”
As part of his role as father, this is a part of his plan to establish generational wealth. In a 2020 interview with Miami Living magazine, he said if he had to choose between artistic legacy and creating financial security for his children’s children’s children, he would opt for whatever would make sure his family is straight.
His boy is on his way.
P. Diddy and His Family’s Combs Cartel
Music mogul and cultural influencer Sean “P. Diddy” Combs has formed a corporate entity called the Combs Cartel for six of his seven children: Quincy, Justin, Christian, twins D’Lila Star and Jessie James and Chance.
The Bad Boy founder said he started the business after Kim Porter, one of the loves of his life, died in 2018.
“We formed a company called Combs Cartel, which is our family business and a lot of their projects will go underneath that,” he said, according to Metro UK.
He said the umbrella company will be for the children to come up with ideas they want to launch.
Two projects that have gained success were the “Making the Band” reboot and the hit Revolt show “Respectfully Justin.”
With Combs’ Cartel effort, Diddy said he wanted to “have more of an impact and change the narrative of the Black family and the Black man and woman globally as being fearless and being intelligent and also not taking no shorts.”
Black-owned businesses have shaped American culture. These businesses, all producing things people all over the world want (water, coffee and entertainment), are teaching these young adults not just the value of hard work but the importance of family units.