Tyrese Gibson posted a video to his Facebook account in which Dr. Dre proclaims himself as “The first billionaire in hip-hop, right here from the (expletive deleted) West Coast.” With this statement it seems that Dr. Dre has confirmed the sale of Beat by Dre to Apple for an approximate sum of $3.2 billion dollars. You read that right, that’s billion with a capital B. Though we’ve heard about billionaires before, it is almost unheard of for someone whose background started in entertainment.
Dr. Dre made his mark as an outspoken member of the 1980’s rap group N.W.A. He has come a long way since his days of running the streets of Compton. Though Dre’s stake in the company has never been made common knowledge, AllHipHop.com’s CEO Chuck Creekmur estimates that “he’s got between 20% and 25% of it.” Therefore, if Apple’s purchase goes through he will stand to make approximately $800 million. Forbes has listed his net worth at $550 million. This deal will make Dre hip hop’s first billionaire, beating rap geniuses gurus like P. Diddy and Jay-z to the punch. What also separates Dr. Dre from other rapper entrepreneurs like Diddy and Jay-z is his relatively quite celebrity presence, as he prefers to keep his producing involvement out of the limelight. An aspect of his life which may have allowed him to reach this milestone first.
To the Dre faithful he may always be seen as a rapper rather than a businessman, but it is the business rather than the rap that has built Dre’s empire. Headphones sold under the Beats by Dre brand usually run about $200 to $400 a pair. Just last year the company did $1.4 billion in sales and has a profit margin of roughly 33%. The company is an undeniable success and Apple’s likely acquisition is a testament to that. Dre is about to do something that no one has ever done before. As a guy who started out on the streets, we couldn’t be happier for his tremendous success. If there’s anyone who deserves this, it’s certainly Dre.
To watch Dr. Dre’s announcement you can find it here (warning: strong language is used).
image via instagram/drdre