Akon has long been a big-idea guy. From dreaming he would one day be an international music star, which has come to fruition, to building a massive smart city in Senegal, which, by all accounts, has stalled. Now the artist has declared he has the key for all African-Americans to become wealthy.
The Senegalese-American singer jumped on the music scene in 2004 with the breakout hit “Locked Up,” and since has amassed a fortune of an estimated $60 million. He has sold over 35 million albums worldwide, with his best-selling album being “Konvicted,” which sold over 7 million copies. He also launched his own music company, Konvict Muzik, featuring popular artists such as T-Pain, Kardinal Offishall and Kat DeLuna, among others.
He recently shared insights into his financial wisdom on staying rich while shedding light on a bold proposition: African-Americans could become millionaires by fully investing in Africa.
Akon’s Secret to Staying Rich: “Stay Stingy”
During a recent interview on Logan Paul’s “IMPAULSIVE” podcast, he revealed his key to financial stability: stinginess.
“Listen, you want to stay rich? Stay stingy. I’m the stingiest muthaf**ka on the planet,” Akon said. “Any person of my caliber is not flying commercial. These dudes flying jets all day. I attempted to own a jet. That s**t lasted six months. I sold that muthaf**ka so fast. You have no idea.”
He added, “Bro, owning a jet, you’re spending at least $2-3 million a year just on upkeep. You spend more on the maintenance than the actual jet costs.”
He stressed the importance of prudent financial management, highlighting the pitfalls of owning a private jet and the exorbitant costs associated with it.
“Even if I only had $100,000 in my account, I look at it like, ‘Okay, this has to last me for a lifetime.’ The moment you think about it like that, you never going to be broke,” Akon said.
Investing in Africa: A Path to Wealth for African-Americans
In a separate interview on Revolt’s podcast show “Assets Over Liabilities,” Akon made a compelling argument for African-Americans to invest in Africa. He believes that Africa holds the potential to turn every African- American into a millionaire due to the continent’s vast opportunities and untapped resources.
“Africa is in a position where if African-Americans take position now, every single African-American would be a millionaire without even thinking twice because there’s nothing that’s not needed over there,” he told hosts Rashad Bilal and Troy Millings. “So, you guys come with the discipline, you guys come with the knowledge, you come with the resources.”
Akon pointed out that Black Americans boost America’s revenue across various sectors, such as sports, entertainment, fashion and medicine. He suggested that if all African-Americans redirected their investments and resources to Africa, that could make for a significant economic shift.
“I mean, you name it. We’re leading in every single sector,” he said. “Just imagine if we all just decided to just take all our bags, withdrew all our money and go to Africa. Where would America be today? It would collapse overnight.”
Akon City: A Bold Vision for Africa’s Future in Limbo
Akon’s ambition extends to his project, Akon City, a futuristic pan-African city located in Senegal. Although the project has faced complications and delays, Akon remains determined to see it through. He plans to retire in Akon City, he told the BBC.
Back in 2020, Akon announced that he was launching the $6 billion project. Akon City was envisioned as a secure and futuristic haven for Black Americans and individuals experiencing racial inequalities.
“If you’re coming from America or Europe or elsewhere in the diaspora and you feel that you want to visit Africa, we want Senegal to be your first stop,” Akon said at the time, per AP News.
Despite the challenges, Akon and his team are dedicated to the city’s completion within an estimated 10-year plan. And, Akon believes that the city’s success could serve as a model for similar developments across the continent.
Phase one was supposed to be complete by the end of 2023, but not much has been accomplished, the BBC reported.
Akon told the outlet that due to the COVID-19 pandemic “everything would be pushed back two years.”
He added, “We’re trying to get the city built as fast as possible.” He said he has a lease on the land for the next 50 years and that his project has “been co-signed by the current president.”
Akon’s vision for Akon City has faced skepticism, with critics questioning its feasibility and financing. The Akoin cryptocurrency, intended to underpin the city’s financial infrastructure, has encountered its own share of delays and struggles.
Additionally, early investors in the Akoin cryptocurrency campaign, known as Token of Appreciation, have experienced delays in receiving refunds. Akon has vowed to address this issue, even if it means personally funding the refunds.
“It wasn’t being managed properly,” Akon admitted to the BBC. “I take full responsibility for that.”
And he added he would make sure crypto investors are refunded. “Even if I gotta go in my own pocket,” he said to the BBC. “I’m dead serious. I would do a world tour just to pay them all back.”