Curtis Jackson, popularly known in the entertainment industry as 50 Cent, is an African-American rapper, actor, producer, and entrepreneur from New York. Born on July 6, 1975, the rapper was raised single-handedly by his mother, Sabrina.
He later moved in with his grandparents after the death of his mother, who was a drug dealer, and also took to selling drugs when he was only 12 years old. He was arrested multiple times for drug-related offenses.
However, he took to rap, as many black youths of his age did, and released a couple of singles. His rap single, “How To Rob,” caught the attention of the late DMX, Jay-Z, and others. Before that, he was taught how to write songs and create choruses by the legendary Jam Master Jay.
In the year 2003, 50 Cent released his debut album “Get Rich or Die Trying,” catapulting him to number one on the Billboard charts. He sold a million copies of the album in the first four days after its release. Since then, he has released several albums and collaborations.
While building an empire behind the microphone, the rapper has set his eyes on entrepreneurship, and has been quite busy in the business world.
Checking out what the rapper has been up to off the mike and off stage, here are six businesses owned by 50 Cent that you probably didn’t know.
G-Unit record label
The rapper’s first business venture is a record label known as G-Unit, which was established in 2003. Since its launch, it has become a powerhouse in the hip-hop industry, launching the careers of several prominent acts such as Lloyd Banks, Tony Yayo, Young Buck, and Mobb Deep.
The company originally started as a joint venture between 50 Cent and Interscope Records but was later acquired by Universal Music Group.
“G-Unit Records has been credited with popularizing the mixtape format, which has become an integral part of hip-hop culture, as well as introducing the world to a new generation of stars, such as Lloyd Banks, Young Buck, and Tony Yayo,” according to Musicgateway.
“The label has also released a number of successful albums, including 50 Cent’s Get Rich or Die Tryin’, which went on to become one of the best-selling albums of all time.”
G-Unit Clothing Company
In addition to G-unit music, 50 Cent also founded the G-Unit Clothing Company. He started the clothing line in 2003 as a joint partnership between himself and Marc Eckō, founder of Eckō Unltd, according to BET.
The deal was likened to the deal Nike and Michael Jordan had, leading to the creation of Air Jordan. In 2008, 50 Cent re-launched the company after taking full ownership of the line, announcing that G-Unit has ended its partnership with March Ecko. Later that year, G-Unit re-established a partnership with plans of a Spring 2009 collection.
SMS by 50
Inspired by Dr. Dre’s Beats, 50 Cent launched a headphone brand called SMS by 50. The product features great audio products that are on the market for DJs and music lovers everywhere, according to BET.
The product came with three distinct models– Sync by 50, Street by 50 (On-ear), and Street by 50 (In-ear).
The rapper is also behind the website ThisIs50.com. According to BET, ThisIs50.com keeps hip-hop heads up to date on the most current tunes and hip-hop gossip.
G-Unit Films and Cheetah Vision
In 2003 and 2008, he ventured into the movie space, resulting in the founding of G-Unit Films and Cheetah Vision respectively. Although G-Unit Films has folded, Cheetah Vision is still in operation, and secured $200 million in funding back in 2010.