Why would famous celebrities want to invest in business start-ups anyway? Why would they want to take millions of dollars and back a tech or business start-up that could go bankrupt in 6 months or never get off the ground? Well, contrary to traditional business sense there are some mega celebrities that are investing in start-ups. It’s either to make more money or just because of the fact that startups are full of new ideas and excitement. They are even taking active parts in running the businesses. We will investigate 10 of these celebrities that have stepped out of their traditional Hollywood roles and they have stepped into the business world. Let’s discover these celebrities’ stories as they step out in to unknown waters.
1. Ashton Kutcher – who is internationally-known as “that guy from the 70’s show” and still many people only know him as that. He has made major waves in a new industry. He and Guy Oseary—who is Madonna’s longtime business manager—have forged an unheralded business partnership with billionaire Ron Burkle. What did this magnificent trio due? They invested 30 million to start A-investments and turned it into a cool 250 million by backing super upstarts in Silicon Valley including Uber and Airbnb. While other celebrities have been known to use their money unwisely, Ashton has hit gold with A-investments.
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2. Nas - the legendary rapper—who has ceded the rap stage to other, younger talents has quietly been making major financial waves with wise investments in the tech world. His venture capital firm Queens Bridge Venture Partners through which he has invested in some startups. Some of these include healthcare and musical production. He has invested in many other startups as well.
3. Robert De Niro - who doesn’t know this legendary actor? He is one of the best actors that has ever lived but we are not going to talk about his acting career but briefly about his investing career. He has made a savvy investment that has returned unlimited profits to his pocketbook. And this windfall has no end in sight as he became a business partner with a famous Japanese chef.
He has not put his name on the chain but it has been very successful despite De Niro staying in the shadows. He has partnered with Nobu Matsuhisa in his Japanese chain and Nobu credits DeNiro with encouraging him to start the chain. It has now become a globally-known chain offering fine Japanese cuisine and Robert De Niro saw the potential of the chain. It has laid many golden eggs for him and there is no end in sight. He made a great investment in this restaurant chain. He is a great investor as well as a fabulous actor.
4. Jessica Simpson - an iconic pop singer who is equally famous for her ditzy moves on the hit reality show Newlyweds. But that was acting on the show this is reality-based investing. She has made some bold and clever moves in the investment world. She has made some very wise profitable decisions with her startup—Jessica Simpson Footwear—in 2006. It has expanded into a multi-billion dollar conglomerate. The original footwear line has expanded into clothing, jewelry, handbags, and more.
She partnered with Camuto Group in in the original footwear line but now she has sold a large portion of the group to Sequential Brands Group for an undisclosed amount. Remember, this line makes billions in sales and Jessica still holds a minority stake in the venture. While other celebrity lines have failed Jessica has managed to stay on top. Her key to success is the ability to connect with consumers on a very human level. She is one of the most successful celebrity business women and she has been for more than a decade.
She has a rare persona of the girl-next-door and connects with everyday people on an everyday level which a lot of celebrities cannot make that connection. This personal ability has increased her success even more.
5. Jay-Z - he strikes again, this time in the business world. He has rapped his way into a net worth of 800 million dollars. He will be the first to tell you he is not a business man but a business. He has expanded into various business ventures from his root Tidal streaming venture which is now worth 10 times more than what he originally purchased it for. He has invested in the Roc Nation Talent agency which negotiated a 51 million dollar pact for Kevin Durant with the Golden State Warriors NBA basketball team. Quite a success story by a rapper who grew up around drugs in the Brooklyn’s Marcy projects.
He is one of the most successful businessmen on the scene today. By widening his horizons he can better understand where other people are coming from. Even in racist situations he better understands the other person’s perspective. He is not saying racism is ok he just handles those kind of interactions better.
6. Reese Witherspoon - she is known as an Oscar-winning actress who was not satisfied with just staying in the confines of acting. She is known for portraying June Carter Cash in the movie Walk the Line. Carter Cash was the second wife of singer Johnny Cash. Carter Cash died on May 15, 2003 and just four months after, Johnny cash passed away on September 12, 2003.
Reese has funded her own production company that has produced two successful films “Wild” and “Run Girl”. Her production company is called Pacific Standard and she has branched out into another market. She is the executive producer of the hit HBO series “Big Little Lies”. Pacific Standard produces women-driven artistic material and she wants to make a difference in Hollywood. She also does want to make money as well and the production company is doing very well. Recently, she has expanded into fashion with her own clothing line. She released a Southern preppy clothing line—Draper James—which is competing with Tory Burch. She is focusing the line on Southern women.
7. 50 Cent - his real name is Curtis Jackson. His tenure as a radio-dominating artist may be over but his business portfolio is booming and it is not going anywhere. He has moved into a new direction from the music business into the business world. He has made some very smart and lucrative business decisions. He has branched out into everything under the sun from video games to clothing. Back in 2007 he sold his share in the “Energy” company to Coca-Cola for 100 million dollars.
8. Gwen Stefani - she rose to fame playing in the “No Doubt” but since then she has run a very successful solo career and she has branched out into many business ventures. Her success in the business world has helped her to increase her net worth to a rosy level of 90 million dollars. She has launched L.A.M.B. a clothing line that caters to celebrities and it is pulling a cool 100 million dollars in sales a year. She has invested in a couple of other startups that are doing very well. She has also launched a fragrance called “L” which is a perfume line which has produced 18 million dollars so far not a bad start. Forbes’ calling it one of the best celebrity fragrances. She has recently produced a children’s program that centers on a musical group of 5 girls. The program follows the girl’s misadventures.
9. Beyonce Knowles - came into fame in music but she has branched off into other genres and has amassed a fortune. She has starred in many movies and she has invested in many businesses and with these string of successes she is has made 350 million dollars. Her business ventures have contributed nicely to this personal fortune.
She has wisely endorsed Pepsi, Ford, American Express and Samsung and with other businesses she takes in 40 million dollars a year. She has made many wise business decisions that have brought her great success in the business world. She has started a personal fragrance line and she has expanded her fashion line to include shop.beyonce.com.
10. Sean Combs - a global leading rap artist whose catchy raps are known around the world. He has collaborated with other famous singers but what a lot of people do not know is that he is a very successful businessman as well. He has his own record label (Bad Boy Records) but his business savvy doesn’t stop there.
He has started the Sean Jean clothing line and he has invested in fragrance line Combs. He has a net worth of 350 million dollars and he has no intentions of slowing down in his dazzling business career. He is as successful in his business endeavors as he is in his music ventures.
These are ten of the most successful celebrities turned business investors in the world today. They have had the courage to step out of their comfort zone and step out into new careers that could have caused them to lose millions of dollars. They knew the risks of investing in new businesses that could have failed. So many other celebrities have invested or tried to start their own businesses but they have failed and lost a lot of money. These celebrities made some very smart business decisions and they have profited immensely in these startups. They have all greatly enhanced their personal financial empires as they have made some very lucrative business deals.