If Forbes’ Hip-Hop Cash Kings of 2014 report is anything to go by, the 21st Century is definitely the best time to be a rapper. According to the report, legendary rapper, producer and former owner of Beats By Dre, Andre Romelle Young commonly known as Dr Dre, has been named the richest rapper in the world, a spot he last occupied in 2012.
Dre moved up to number one from last year’s third spot. His pre-tax net worth is currently at $620 million (R5,6 billion). 2013’s top hip-hop earner Diddy has moved down to the second spot, which he shares with Jay Z. Jay Z occupied the same spot last year.
Dr Dre’s net worth shot up after Apple bought Beats By Dre, the headphones and music-streaming company he co-owned with entrepreneur and producer Jimmy Iovine for $3 billion in May this year.
Forbes explained that the Hip-Hop Cash Kings report adds up the pre-tax income of hip-hop artists between June 2013 and 2014. The total sum of each artist’s earnings is estimated from album sales, publishing deals, tours, merchandise sales, endorsements, as well as various other business ventures. Interviews with some of the artists, managers, lawyers, record label executives as well as reputable music organisations were conducted to find out how much each artist was worth.
Nicki Minaj, the first and only female rapper to ever make this list, makes an appearance for the fourth time since 2011. Timbaland, Kid Cudi, Akon, A$AP Rocky, Common, Questlove, Nas and TI also raked in millions, but didn’t make the report’s cut-off figure of $7 million.
Below is the full list of the 24 rappers who made it onto the 2014 Hip Hop Cash Kings list:
- Dr Dre $620 million (R6,9 billion)
- Jay Z and Diddy each worth $60 million (R670,8 million)
- Drake $33 million (R368,9 million)
- Macklemore & Ryan Lewis: $32 million (R357,8 million)
- Kanye West: $30 million (R335,4 million)
- Birdman: $24 million (R268,3 million)
- Lil Wayne: $23 million (R257,1 million)
- Pharrell Williams: $22 million (R245,9 million)
- Eminem: $18 million (R201,2 million)
- Nicki Minaj: $14 million (R156,5 million)
- Wiz Khalifa: $13 million (R145,3 million)
- Pitbull: $12 million (R134,2 million)
- Snoop Dogg: $10 million (R111,8 million)
- Kendrick Lamar: $9 million (100,6 million)
- Ludacris, Swizz Beatz, 50 Cent and Tech N9ne each worth $8 million (R89,4 million)
- Rick Ross, J Cole, DJ Khaled, Mac Miller and Lil’ John each worth $7 million (R82,6)