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Back in June of 2019, Forbes reported that Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter was officially a billionaire. One of the very few to make it onto the billionaire list coming from the entertainment world. Forbes also reported on how that billion was tracked. Jay has his fingers in several very well known companies. Two of those are Armand de Brignac, which produces the very popular Ace of Spades champagne, and Tidal, the music streaming service.
Jay-Z has been in the news in the last couple of weeks due to big business moves involving these two of his brands. The first of such deals was selling a 50% stake in Armand de Brignac to Moët Hennessy for a reported $300 million. (This is an estimated guess due to the fact that neither side disclosed any of the actual amounts.) LVMH will now take over distribution of the very famous champagne brand.
The second mind blowing deal that Jay-Z announced in recent weeks involved Tidal. Jack Dorsey, most notably known as co-founder of Twitter, has purchased the controlling stake in Tidal for $297 million. In addition, the deal also includes that Jay-Z will now sit on the Board of Directors for Square. Square is the mobile payments platform in which Dorsey is CEO. Square also owns the popular payment app, CashApp. CasApp not only allows users to send money and make payments to others, but also is an investment app that allows users to make stock and Bitcoin purchases.
At this point, you may be wondering why this article is titled “Why is Jay-Z selling out?”
A lot of internet backlash to these recent moves is that Jay-Z shouldn't be selling stakes of these Black owned entities to non Black buyers. It is always interesting to see non-millionaires react to million dollar deals. Just because someone is selling, does not mean that they are selling out.
When Forbes announced Jay-Z's billionaire status in 2019, Armand de Brignac was valued at $310 million. Less than two years later he sold HALF of the company for that amount. And in selling, he has acquired the largest champagne distributor in the world to take over his worldwide distribution. At the time, Tidal was valued at $100 million. And keep in mind that he bought the company in 2014 for $57 million. Jay sold his controlling stake in Tidal for nearly $300 million. Another thing to remember, Jay sold one third of Tidal back in 2017 for $200 million. Almost half a billion in profit… and he now sits on the board of a company valued at somewhere between $4 and 5 billion.
Still think he's selling out?
All of the artists that were part owners and made investments in the company's early days still all retain their stakes in the company. In the process of making himself a billionaire, Jay is making tons of other people a lot of money as well.
Forbes reported that with these last two power moves made by Jay, that is net wroth jumped 40%. That's a quick $400 million dollars that he made in just the matter of a few weeks. And Jay-Z is not done making power moves. Dorsey and Jay are looking to make Bitcoin the currency of the internet. And just wait until you hear about Perch. Jay-Z is launching a company to help normal everyday people like me and you improve their credit scores.
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