Kylie Jenner has been named Forbes’ youngest self-made billionaire for the second year in a row. Last year, this caused a controversy likely to be reignited with Forbes’ release of another annual list with her name at the top.
How She Made Her Billions
At 21, Kylie Jenner was named the youngest self-made billionaire ever by American business magazine Forbes. The magazine detailed her rise to billionaire status through her cosmetics company, Kylie Cosmetics.
Jenner is classified as a self-made billionaire because she did not inherit her company. There are ten billionaires under the age of 30 on Forbes’ list, and of those ten, seven inherited their fortunes. The other three are self-made. Jenner is the youngest at 22. John Collison, 29, co-founder of Stripe and Evan Spiegel, 29, co-founder of Snapchat join Jenner on that short list.
Did She Earn The Title?
The controversy around Jenner’s self-made status comes from the fact that her family is both very famous and very wealthy. Her father, Caitlyn Jenner, was an Olympic gold medalist and her mother (and manager) is Kris Jenner. Kris Jenner gave birth to five women and managed to make them all very rich and very famous, with Jenner being the youngest. If you don’t know about all this, I don’t know where you’ve been.
It seems as though many take issue with Jenner’s self-made title, because how could you possibly be self-made with a family like that. Really, however, the issue is more complicated than it seems. Jenner has undoubtedly enjoyed a level of privilege that most of us can’t even dream of. The wealth and fame of her family almost certainly eased her path to fortune.
However, she did not inherit her company from her family, like many of the other billionaires under 30 on Forbes’ list. Her family legacy helped her, but it didn’t directly build her. There are plenty of people out there with wealthy and famous families. Very few of those people manage to leverage their sister’s sex tape and a subsequent reality show into a billion-dollar company.
There’s plenty of fame and wealth and privilege to go around on Forbes’ list, and sure, there are probably people more deserving of a billion dollars. However, to say that Jenner isn’t self-made, is both minimizing her accomplishments and completely irrelevant. She fits the definition. Jenner didn’t inherit her company, she built it herself, and she has the billions to back it up.