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5 businesses owned by Akon

by Feyisayo Ajayi

From the melodic rhythm of chart-toppers like “Don’t Matter” and “Lonely,” Akon has serenaded the world not just with his music, but also with his acumen for business. Starting his musical journey in 1995 with “Operations of Nature,” Akon wasn’t an immediate sensation. However, under the mentorship of internet personality and music magnate, Devyne Stephens, he meticulously crafted his sound and in 2003, exploded onto the global music scene.

However, Akon’s journey isn’t just a tale of musical prowess. After a dazzling musical run till 2018, he took a strategic pause, venturing beyond the music world’s limelight to shape a diverse business portfolio. Most notably, he caught global attention with his ambitious vision of creating a real-life Wakanda in Senegal — a sprawling $6-billion city powered by solar energy and pivoted on his bespoke cryptocurrency, Akoin.

Born as Aliaune Damala Badara Thiam in St. Louis, Missouri, Akon’s roots trace back to Senegal. His father, Mor Thiam, graced the jazz world as a prominent percussionist, while his mother, Kine Gueye Thiam, celebrated the West African dance heritage. The blend of cultures, mirrored in his childhood shuttling between the United States and Senegal, fostered in him an appreciation for both traditional and western instruments — a foundation that later made him a two-time Grammy Award-winner. Beyond music, his Akon Lighting Africa initiative, initiated in 2014, further demonstrated his commitment to the continent.

Today, Akon’s legacy is multifaceted. While his music continues to resonate, his business ventures—from savvy stock investments to real estate, from motor sports to cosmetics—underscore his astute entrepreneurial spirit. Join us as we delve into the empire of Akon, spotlighting five of his standout ventures.

  • Konvict Muzik

Konvict Muzik is a record label founded by R&B singer Akon in 2004. Some artists on the platform’s roster are Crip Mac, Kota Tha G, 9Gang, Sarkodie, Wizkid, and PSquare.

  • Konvict Clothing

In 2007, he launched his clothing line, Konvict Clothing, specializing in urban streetwear.

  • Akon City

Founded by Akon, creatively, and the Senegalese government, fiscally, Akon City is a planned community in the M’bour Department of Senegal. He was inspired with the idea after watching the movie, “Black Panther.”

  • Akoin 

Akoin is a cryptocurrency powered by a blockchain-based ecosystem of tools and services designed for entrepreneurs in the rising economies of Africa and beyond. The star first announced the project in 2018.

  • Akon Lighting Africa

Founded in 2014 by Akon, Samba Bathily, and Thione Niang, Akon Lighting Africa is a project that aims to provide electricity by solar energy in Africa, initially by installing solar street lights and small energy systems.

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