How Rihanna Went From Near Bankruptcy To Becoming The Youngest Self-made Billionaire

WaysHowTo 9 months ago
Updated 2022/07/09 at 10:50 AM
3 Min Read

Musician turned business mogul, Rihanna has just become America’s youngest self-made billionaire with $1.7 billion.

In the past year, Forbes has recorded 87 less billionaires than it did in 2020. With a global pandemic, economic setbacks, and inflation across the globe, it has been a hard year for a lot of people, some of the 1% included.

Although it has been tough, 236 have managed to join the ranks of billionaires across the world. Among the list is the founder and CEO of Fenty Beauty, a cosmetic company.

In April of this year, Rihanna made her debut on the Forbes annual billionaires list. She has had an interesting career from humble beginnings to stardom, then nearly going bankrupt to increasing her net worth at that time by 340% now. Starting her career in 2003 at around 15 years old, Rihanna has been working for 19 years.


  • In 2007, she had a net worth close to $50 million. But only two years after, she faced bankruptcy. Business Insider reported that Rihanna started 2009 with $11 million in cash and ended the year with $2 million.
  • Her fall in income was attributed to poor advice from her ex-accountant who she later sued for mismanaging funds, stealing large amounts of profits, and not properly filing taxes, according to the HuffPost. Rihanna went on to win the lawsuit against Berdon LLP in 2012, coming out on top with a $10 million settlement.
  • In recent years, Rihanna’s net worth has grown to an estimated $1.7 billion mostly because of her undertakings outside of music. Rihanna has not released new music in six years or gone on any major tours. Her Fenty Beauty cosmetics line and the Savage X Fenty lingerie business had a hand in placing her at 1,729 on the Forbes list.

What helped the company grow so fast besides the founder’s popularity and fanbase was its products that catered to an undervalued market – black, indigenous, and people of colour whose skin tones are not always considered by other brands.

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