Emirates Man - - FEATURE MUSIC -

An or­phan at eight, crack dealer at 12, rap­per at 21 and shot nine times aged 24, it’s quite frankly a mir­a­cle Cur­tis ‘ 50 Cent’ Jack­son is alive to­day, let alone worth an es­ti­mated $ 270 mil­lion. But since sur­viv­ing a bar­rage of bul­lets in 2000 and mak­ing his name in the rap and movie world, 50 Cent now en­joys even more suc­cess as a wily in­vestor.

If the launch of Jack­son’s own mu­sic and fash­ion la­bel ( GUnit Records and G- Unit Cloth­ing, re­spec­tively) was a common rap move when he did so in 2003, his align­ment with Vi­ta­m­in­Wa­ter was a par­tic­u­larly in­ven­tive one. Largely tee­to­tal after a sketchy up­bring­ing in the company of al­co­holics, Fiddy was the per­fect celebrity to en­dorse the avoured wa­ter in 2004, for the sim­ple fact he drank it him­self. But, rather than be Vi­ta­m­in­Wa­ter’s poster boy, Jack­son be­came a share­holder, even work­ing with the company to cre­ate a new grape- avoured prod­uct, For­mula 50.

So when par­ent company Glaceau sold Vi­ta­m­in­Wa­ter to Coca- Cola in 2007 for $ 4.1 bil­lion, 50 Cent earned him­self an es­ti­mated $ 100 mil­lion from the deal. Im­pres­sive though the gure may be, Jack­son him­self wasn’t satis ed – a tes­ta­ment to his en­tre­pre­neur­ial na­ture. “I was fo­cused on the fact that $ 4.1 bil­lion was made,” said Fiddy. “I think I can do a big­ger deal in the fu­ture.”

Since then, Jack­son has launched his own elec­tron­ics company ( SMS Audio), part­nered with Right Guard to cre­ate Pure 50 RGX Body Spray, and has vowed to pro­vide a bil­lion meals to the World Food Pro­gramme through sales of his lat­est soft drink ven­ture, SK En­ergy.

And like a hip- hop Gor­don Gekko, 50 Cent’s cur­rent em­pire is all about va­ri­ety. Stocks and shares, real es­tate, books, a self- star­ring video game and even his own lm pro­duc­tion company, Chee­tah Vi­sion. In 2008 there were even ru­mours Jack­son was look­ing to trade­mark his own brand of plat­inum.

“I’ve got a di­verse port­fo­lio,” Fiddy dead­panned at the time.

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