February 23, 2012; Source: Forbes
Since his wild success in 2003, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, who is ranked number five on Forbes’ list of “Hip Hop’s Wealthiest Artists,” believes it is his responsibility to give back. That’s why—along with the other members of the “G-Unit”—he started the G-Unity Foundation, a grantmaking organization with the mission of “improving the quality of life for low-income and undeserved communities.” Here’s a video of G-Unity giving away turkeys on Thanksgiving:
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50 has also launched a drink, Street King, with proceeds providing a meal to a child for every bottle sold, and he has partnered with SMS Audio and Feeding America to provide food for needy children with the sale of headphones. As business-savvy as he is musically talented, 50 reportedly earned $100 million when Vitamin Water was bought by Coca Cola (he had developed a Vitamin Water drink called Formula 50 and was a shareholder in Vitamin Water’s original company, Glaceau).
As with most celebrity philanthropy, it’s hard to decipher the real motivation in 50’s giving. But I like what he had to say when Rahim Kanani from Forbes asked him about his philanthropic message to other hip hop artists:
“According to World Bank numbers, contributing one percent of business to charitable organizations could alleviate extreme poverty around the world. So with conscious capitalism, I hope to influence my peers and other entrepreneurs to create a new standard of making change.” –Kristin Barrali