- Besides her rich exploits in the fashion industry, Rihanna also got the President’s Award at the NAACP Awards earlier this year which acknowledges her special feats in public service. On the occasion, NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson spoke about Rihanna as a recipient of the award.
I stand up for what I believe in, and a lot of the time that can be against people’s opinions. Rihanna
The opening line of Rihanna’s dance hall anthem of 2016 titled ‘Work’ is “work, work, work, work, work, work” and it is something that one would consider has a realistic connection to the ace singer-actress-entrepreneur’s life philosophy. No wonder, she is the richest female singer on this planet.
But how did Robyn Rihanna Fenty or Rihanna script her incredible success story? The Barbados-born, who saw a strained marriage of her parents and a disturbed personal relationship with Chris Brown, has taken big strides over the last few years and clinched the top position in Forbes Richest Self-Made Women Under 40 list. Rihanna, with a net worth of $600 million, has topped a list which features some big names like Madonna ($570 million), Céline Dion ($450 million) and Beyoncé ($400 million).
It is not that Rihanna has made a fortune only from singing. Most of that originates not from music but her ties with LVMH, a French luxury goods giant. She co-owns along with LVMH, make-up brand Fenty Beauty. It was launched in late 2017 at Sephora, another LVMH brand, besides online at FentyBeauty.com. Rihanna’s own fame and following gave Fenty Beauty a massive boost and its rise gave the celebrity a counter boost.
It is significant to mention that Rihanna’s topping the list of the richest female singers has been facilitated to a great extent by the phenomenal growth of the US’s personal care industry. According to Grand View Research, the industry could grow to more than $200 billion in sales in another five years’ time (from $130 billion in 2016) and it is not surprising to see that 11 of the 80 women who got placed in Forbes’s list of the Richest Self-Made Women made a huge fortune in beauty products. Rihanna became an idol that many of them followed and turned small marketing opportunities into big ones, by cashing on social media. Rihanna’s entrepreneurial story doesn’t end here. She also co-owns a lingerie line — Savage X Fenty — with Los Angeles’s online fashion firm TechStyle Fashion Group. In May, she also announced along with LVMH the launching of a new clothing house that will manufacture high-end clothes, shoes, jewelry, etc.
If one has a lesson to learn about Rihanna’s successful entrepreneurship, here it is. Despite earning all your name and fame in one particular field, you can go on to cash it in another field to earn big money.
Besides her rich exploits in the fashion industry, Rihanna also got the President’s Award at the NAACP Awards earlier this year which acknowledges her special feats in public service. On the occasion, NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson spoke about Rihanna as a recipient of the award. He said Rihanna has not only made a big name through her singing and cosmetic industry but also as an activist and philanthropist which made her a worthy candidate for the award.
Five things to learn from Rihanna on how to become successful:
Smart investing: Rihanna’s talent is not restricted to singing. She is one who also knows how to invest smartly. While she earns millions, she also makes sure that she invests them smartly and leaves a strong legacy as an entrepreneur. Rihanna has reportedly spent more than $30 million from her pocket to build brands like Fenty with LVMH. She also has a business eye set on the real-estate market. She bought a mansion in LA for $6.8 million and listed it later for $7.4 million.
The brand: One advantage with celebrities like Rihanna is that their brand identity in the creative world also leads to a good business gain. One study in 2016 has shown that her fans are 3.7 times more likely to buy products from her compared to any other celebrity, Business Insider reported in June last year. Her fan-base loyalty translates into millions when it comes to her fashion lines. This highly successful marriage between a creative brand and a successful entrepreneur has made success look so easy and big for Rihanna.
The habit of collaborating: According to some, Rihanna doesn’t have the best voice but yet, she has achieved great success. One of the reasons for that is that the 30-something has never hesitated to make partnership with the best in her industry. Several of Rihanna’s hit songs have come in collaborations and this has paid off big time for her. She not only brings good artistes on her projects but also joins hands with great writers. In the business sector, too, she has followed a similar path and that has done wonders.
Giving it back: It always pays off when one returns the favor. Rihanna is known for her philanthropy as much as for her singing. She is a recipient of Harvard University’s Humanitarian of the Year Award in the past where she said that by the age of 18, she was into her maiden charity organization. She started her Believe Foundation in 2006 to assist children that are terminally ill. She has associated herself with other charities, including the Clara Lionel Foundation which is named after her grandparents.
Even former president Barack Obama once praised Rihanna’s humanitarian work to say that she emerged as “a powerful force in the fight to give people dignity”. Rihanna’s charity has even seen international reach as it provided bikes to young girls in Malawi to reach school safely and fast. But it is not because of her riches that Rihanna has engaged in humanitarian work. In her Harvard acceptance speech, she said that all one needs to help others is a person, an organization and just one dollar to spare. That is the crux of the whole matter. You get more rich when you harbor such thoughts and reach out to more people.
Looking for opportunities but with a sensitive eye: Rihanna’s success in the make-up industry is not something that she has tasted as a first-ever person. There are other noted celebrities who have made similar identities but Rihanna’s strategic moves in this regard made people more curious. She approached her Fenty Beauty story with a thinking entrepreneur’s mind. She entered the field gradually and did not rush to earn overnight fame.
As she prepared to associate herself with Fenty which was still a brand in the making, she also sensed other business opportunities. As a true social ambassador, she ensured that the products took care of all skin tones to give the message that the brand she endorses believes in inclusivity and diversity. This sensitive worldview in terms of cultural diversity is something that makes an entrepreneur famous. Rihanna’s story was no exception.
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