Forbes' annual list of Hip-Hop's Cash Kings for this year has been unveiled, and it witnesses music mogul Jay-Z on the very top spot. Over the past 12 months, between June 2008 and June 2009, he has been pulling in an estimated $35 million, an amount which is $47 million less than his earnings in 2008.
Last year's winner, 50 Cent, drops to the 4th place. He is reported taking in $20 million, down from $150 million a year ago. The earnings are said coming from his Vitamin Water deal, G-Unit clothing line and numerous licensing deals.
In between Jay-Z and Fiddy there are P. Diddy and Kanye West, who secure the 2nd and 3rd slots respectively. P. Diddy rakes in $30 million over the past year from his expanding business that includes a brand of premium vodka and his Sean John clothing line. Kanye, meanwhile, earns a total of $25 million, thanks to his multi-platinum album "808's & Heartbreak" and his sold-out Glow in the Dark Tour.
"Despite the economy, hip-hop is just as powerful as it's ever been in the endorsement and licensing world," says Ryan Schinman, chief of Platinum Rye, the world's largest buyer of music and talent for corporations when commenting on Forbes' Hip-Hop's Cash Kings 2009 list. "Tween stars and rock legends are very reliable, but the impact of hip-hop on pop-culture and fashion continues to lead the charge."