Rihanna is, above all else, a businesswoman.
Throughout her music career, she became the most streamed female artist on Spotfiy for three years in a row and she holds the title for most cumulative weeks on the UK singles chart by a female. She’s the only female artist to have a number one song in the UK charts for seven consecutive years.
When she launched Fenty Beauty, an inclusive makeup range which kicked off with 40 shades of foundation – a virtually unheard of feat for any beauty brand – she was met with widespread critical and consumer acclaim and it earned a media value of $72m within its first month of sales, surpassing established brands like NYX and Benefit.
The media value is an index which monitors the monetary value of buzz and Fenty got more coverage online through traditional and digital media than nearly of all her competitors; which is no easy feat.
Times, they are a changing, and for those brands who aren’t as willing to adapt will not only be left behind, but forgotten entirely, left in the shadows of history books to forward-thinkers like Rihanna.
Like most prosperous entrepreneurs, you get the impression that she isn’t exclusively reliant on metrics and marketing, but instinct: she knows from personal experience how difficult it can be to find quality fashion and beauty products when you don’t fit a certain look and has both the means and motivation to improve on this at mass market levels.
Last Wednesday, she dropped a sneak peek of the first pieces, each with a distinctively Rihanna-twist. The ready-to-wear luxury line is being released through the LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy) fashion house, which also owns Dior, Marc Jacobs, Fendi and Sephora, among others.
Rihanna is not only the first woman to create an original brand, but but she is also the first woman of colour to achieve such a feat; and hers is the first new label created by the groups since Christian Lacroix in 1987. The nine-time Grammy winner said that particular accomplishment “made her feel proud” when she learned.