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More and more often these days, celebrities are expanding their portfolios and building up their own empires.
Long gone are the days when famous folks are expected to stand around and just look pretty. Musicians, actors, athletes, and more are breaking barriers and creating their own revenue streams — an admirable goal considering how incredibly volatile these industries can be.
Below, check out our favorite female celebrities-turned-CEOs who are absolutely killing it in the business world.
Rihanna has an incredible decades-long business career, first dabbling in fragrances in 2011 before becoming a co-owner of Jay-Z’s streaming service Tidal and eventually launching her namesake Fenty Franchise.
Fenty Beauty, which launched in 2017, completely changed the makeup industry irrevocably. With an unprecedented amount of foundation shades for women of color, Fenty Beauty forced the rest of the industry to expand its foundation lines as well.
As if that wasn’t incredible enough, Rihanna soon launched Savage X Fenty in 2018. The size-inclusive lingerie line was another brand that completely upended its industry. Her now-infamous Savage X Fenty Runway Shows on Amazon Prime has set a new industry standard on what it means to include plus-size models and forced old-school brands like Victoria’s Secret to reevaluate their misogynist ways if they wanted to continue to compete.
Her latest brand, Fenty Skin, just launched in 2020 and has already garnered a variety of positive reviews. It’s sure to live up to its namesake and kickass.
You can currently buy all of her brands online — Savage X Fenty on Amazon, and Fenty Beauty and Fenty Skin on Sephora (both websites most likely use payment gateway services that streamline payment options).
2. Serena Williams
As if being one of the greatest tennis players (of any gender!) of our generation wasn’t enough, Serena Williams has decided she’s ready to tackle the world of venture capitalism.
In 2022, Serena announced that she would be stepping away from tennis to focus on her angel investment firm Serena Ventures, which heavily focuses on businesses founded by women and people of color.
Despite still being a relatively new business, Serena Ventures has already raised $111M in initial funding.
Of course, this is not nearly the first time Serena has dipped her toe in the business world. In 2004, she’s launched a line of handbags and jewelry that sells on HSN. She later followed this up with a sustainable clothing line called S by Serena, which launched in 2020.
3. Mindy Kaling
Mindy Kaling originally started in the writer’s room of the office before launching into stardom as an actress and eventually creating her own TV shows.
In 2012, Mindy founded her own media company, Kaling International, which has soon gone on to create a series of successful shows. Her Netflix series Never Have I Ever quickly became one of the most popular shows on the streaming service and will wrap with its upcoming fourth season (as per Mindy’s request). And, as any avid Netflix viewer knows, making it to four seasons on Netflix is like spotting a unicorn.
On top of that, Mindy launched The Sex Lives of College Girls on HBO Max, which has been renewed for a second season.
Previous Kaling International ventures have included Four Weddings and a Funeral on Hulu, Late Night on Amazon Prime, and, of course, the show that started it all, The Mindy Project, which successfully ran for six seasons.