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The secret to Tyler Perry’s $1billion dollar empire

Tyler Perry went from sleeping in his car after flopped shows to becoming a billionaire entertainer.




Over the years a distinct class of sectors has been noted for producing the most billionaires. When you go through any rich list you are most likely to find these sectors fully represented and leading the park. According to Visual Capitalist, these following sectors produced the most billionaires from 2009 to 2020.

  • Technology
  • Health industries
  • Industrials
  • Real estate.

Where is entertainment? 

Despite the luxurious lifestyle of high flying celebrities, The entertainment industry has hardly been a billion-dollar sector for entertainers. Most famous celebrities with millions of followers around the world are nowhere close to a billion-dollar net worth. Entertainers have always struggled with finances after their peak years while some ended up in debt. But recently there has been a slight break away from the norm. Some entertainers are finding new ways to climb the money tree and are succeeding at it.

READ: Aliko Dangote’s net worth falls by $840 million

Tyler Perry belongs to a distinct class 

According to Forbes, there are very few entertainers who ever get to make it to the billion-dollar club. When eventually they make it there, it is hardly from their craft. For example, Kanye West made it to the billion-dollar circle from a partnership deal with Adidas, not his music. Forbes stated that Kanye West’s entire music catalog is worth a paltry $90m.

Jay Z made it to the circle from a series of investments that cut across various sectors.

Tyler Perry belongs to a unicorn class of entertainers who achieved a billion-dollar net worth solely from their craft.

READ: A Look back at Jay Z’s Road to Billionaire Status

Tyler Perry’s journey to riches 

Tyler Perry went from sleeping in his car after flopped shows to becoming a billionaire entertainer. In an exclusive interview with Forbes, he shared his personal journey and struggles to feed and pay rent.


Perry dropped out of high school. He did not attend any business school. He worked odd jobs to get by while performing his shows for a meagre crowd. Tyler Perry explained to Forbes that he had to work in hotels, sell cars and collect bills.


READ: How Kanye West became the richest black American with $6.6 billion net worth

$12,000 seed money 

Perry kicked off his production with $12,000 he saved from his many odd jobs. He used the money to rent space at a community theater in Atlanta to produce a work he had drafted in his spare time.

He kicked off his career from there, touring and performing his debut drama “I knew I have been saved” in different cities. It wasn’t rosy and couldn’t pay the bills. He had to sleep in his car for 3 months at a time.

In 2001 he was invited by Oprah Winfrey to her popular talk show and that was when his special relationship with Oprah Winfrey started.

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READ: Covid-19 Billionaires: Meet Turkish couple behind $21bn BioNtech company

Oprah Winfrey’s billion-dollar advice

Perry revealed to Forbes how much of his business success he owes to Oprah Winfrey’s advice. Perry revealed that he was advised by Oprah Winfrey to own his entire operation. Perry owns a sprawling 330-acre Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta. He produces his own content and owns 100% of it.

Forbes credited this strategy as the silver bullet that landed Perry in the billion-dollar circle. According to Forbes, Perry started earning a pretax income of $1.4 billion in 2005.

Tyler Perry current net worth 

According to Forbes, Tyler Perry officially became a billionaire in 2020. He is currently worth $1bn.

He joins a distinct class of entertainers who reached a billion-dollar status solely from their craft.

What you should know 

  • Tyler Perry famous character Madea – an elderly Black woman – made him a total of $290m, according to Newsweek. The Madea Franchise consists of 14 movies spanning a period of 11 years.
  • He gets paid $150m every year for fresh content by media giants Viacom CBS, according to Newsweek.
  • He owns his entire means of production and often rents it out to other production companies. This is believed by Forbes to be his key comparative advantage over other entertainers.

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I Am A Business Analyst And Digital Media Enthusiast Covering Wealth And Business Leaders. Follow Me On Twitter

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Billionaire Watch

TikTok’s parent company, Bytedance now more valuable than Coca Cola and Exxon Mobil

A company founded 9 years ago is currently more valuable than a transgenerational business like Coca Cola and Exxon Mobil.



TikTok announces $250 million pledge to aid combat coronavirus, Tiktok set to reduce misinformation on its platform

TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance which was founded in 2012 is now more valuable than the world’s biggest soda brand Coca Cola and energy giants, Exxon Mobil.

ByteDance was founded by Zhang Yiming in 2012 and he went on to launch TikTok, a video sharing application in 2016. Tiktok immediately became a hit on the internet. In less than two years of its launch, it became the most downloaded app in the world according to Forbes.

With over 500m active monthly users, TikTok quickly gained the attention of big venture capitalist firms who invested more in it.

READ: Exxon begins talks with domestic firms to divest businesses in Nigeria

Shocking comparisons 

ByteDance was founded in 2012 and is currently more valuable than a company founded in 1892 (Coca Cola) and (1999) Exxon Mobil.

ByteDance, according to its company profile has over 60,000 employees while Coca Cola and its 300 bottling partners employ over 700,000 people. Exxon Mobil has an estimated 72,000 employees.

Difference in valuation

According to Bloomberg, ByteDance is currently trading at a valuation of more than $250 billion in the secondary market. The number is set to go up with some investors pegging the valuation at $350 billion.

ByteDance with a current valuation of $250bn is more valuable than Coca Cola which was recently valued at $235.33bn. ByteDance also beats Exxon Mobil which is currently valued at $237.08bn.


READ: Exxon Mobil to cut 14,000 jobs as pandemic hit oil demand, prices


What you should know 

  • The above story paints a clear picture of the power of the internet age. A company founded 9 years ago is currently more valuable than a transgenerational business like Coca Cola and Exxon Mobil.
  • According to Investopedia a valuation is the analytical process of determining the current (or projected) worth of an asset or a company.  An analyst placing a value on a company looks at the business’ management, the composition of its capital structure, the prospect of future earnings, and the market value of its assets.

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Billionaire Watch

Squarespace founder is the latest billionaire, set to make $3bn from listing his company

The latest valuation of Squarespace sets Casalena up for a fresh $3billion, making him the latest billionaire in the market.




What is Squarespace?

Squarespace is a platform that helps small businesses and individuals build customized websites and online stores for e-commerce. It is also a hosting company which is based in New York City, United States. It provides software as a service for website building and hosting, and allows users to use pre-built website templates and drag-and-drop elements to create and modify webpages.

Who founded Squarespace?

Squarespace was founded by 38-year-old Anthony Casalena seventeen years ago. The platform was founded in his dorm room at the University of Maryland. For many years, he was the only one running the platform. He launched the platform with a $30,000 seed fund and grants from his university and the platform reached a $1m valuation in 2006.

READ: Mark Zuckerberg, youngest person ever to be worth over $100 billion

Squarespace latest valuation and growth

Last month, Squarespace raised a whopping $300m from investors who valued the company at $10bn. The successful outing prompted the decision by the Founder to go public.

The company has grown tremendously since its inception in 2003. The number of subscribers increased nearly 23% in 2020, to 3.7 million users. The company also made a revenue of $620 million which was a 28% increase from the previous year according to Forbes.

Squarespace employees have grown from just the Founder to 1200 employees across the United States and Ireland.

READ: Clubhouse adds payment feature to enable creators to get paid on the app

Anthony Casalena’s new net worth

Following the latest valuation of his company at $10bn, Anthony Casalena is set to become a billionaire. According to Forbes Squarespace’s SEC filings revealed that he has a 33% stake in the company.


The latest valuation of his company sets him up for a fresh $3bn making him the latest billionaire in the market.


What you should know

Squarespace is listing its company in the market using direct listing. A direct listing is a process by which a company can go public by selling existing shares instead of offering new ones.

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