Serena Williams Becomes First Athlete On Forbes’ Richest Self-Made Women List

Tennis star Serena Williams has made history by becoming the first athlete to make Forbes’ list of the World’s Richest Self-Made Women.The magazine made the announcement on Monday, June 3, and Williams will grace the cover of the publication on June 30, 2019. Williams also tweeted about her accomplishment and being on the cover of the magazine.

“Be the brand. Starting @ShopSerena and Serena Ventures are just a few steps. Honored to be the first athlete on @Forbes #SelfMadeWomen list,” Williams tweeted on June 4. Williams’ estimated worth is $225 million, according to the list. The magazine states that the tennis star and fashion mogul earned most of her money on the court and has been quietly investing in 34 start-ups. In April, she announced on Instagram the public launch of her company Serena Ventures, which has funded and helped other companies launch since 2014.

“Serena Ventures invests in companies that embrace diverse leadership, individual empowerment, creativity and opportunity,” she wrote. Williams also has her own clothing line called S by Serena and is having a show for her line during New York Fashion Week in September, according to Forbes. She told the publication she has plans to launch an S by Serena jewelry line this year and beauty products by 2020.

“I want to be a part of it,” she told the magazine during a recent interview. “I want to be in the infrastructure. I want to be the brand, instead of just being the face.” The tennis star grew up in Compton, California and is the youngest of five sisters, according to her biography on the United States Olympic Committee. She began playing tennis when she was five-years-old and turned professional in 1995, according to ESPN. During her career, she has won 72 titles and 23 doubles titles in the sport, the website stated. In September 2017, the tennis star became a mother to Alexis Olympia Ohanian, Jr. and married Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian in November 2017, according to Business Insider.

The 37-year-old told Forbes that she will continue to play the sport for at least two to three more years."I am in no rush to get out of this sport," she told the publication. Other women of color who made the Forbes list include Oprah Winfrey, Rihanna, Vera Wang, and Beyoncé.

The list named singer and fashion designer Rihanna as the richest female musician in the world. The 31-year-old star beat out iconic musicians like Celine Dion, Beyoncé, and Madonna, and is worth $600 million, Forbes reported. The main source of her income came from Fenty Beauty, the make-up brand she co-owns with LVMH, a French luxury goods company. The cosmetics brand, which was founded in September 2017, generated an estimated $570 million in revenue during its first 15 months, according to the publication.

The businesswoman, whose real name is Robyn Rihanna Fenty, announced in May that she would be partnering with LVMH for a new fashion house called Fenty, which will be based in Paris, according to the magazine. She also owns her own lingerie line called Savage X Fenty with TechStyle Fashion Group, an online fashion firm that is based in California, the publication reported.

Another musician that made history this week was rapper Jay-Z after he became the first hip-hop artist to become a billionaire. The rapper, whose real name is Shawn Carter, owns the music streaming service called Tidal and also owns Roc Nation, his sports management company, Forbes reported.

The rapper also has invested $70 million in Uber, $50 million in different real estate holdings, and a stake in a $70 million art collection. He launched Armand de Brignac, his own champagne company in 2006, which is now worth $310 million, Forbes reported. He also made his own cognac called D’Ussé with Bacardi, which is now worth $100 million, the magazine reported.

Kasseem “Swizz Beatz” Dean, a producer who has worked with the hip-hop legend, told Forbes that the news of Jay-Z’s success is much “bigger than hip-hop.” “A guy that looks like us, sounds like us, loves us, made it to something that we always felt that was above us,” Swizz Beatz told the publication. “If he’s a billionaire now, imagine what he’s about to be. Because he’s only just starting.”

About the Author

Maria Perez is a breaking news writer for The North Star. She has an M.A. in Urban Reporting from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. She has been published in the various venues, including Newsweek, Juvenile Justice Information Exchange, City Limits, and local newspapers like The Wave and The Home Reporter.