In a society where men continue to call the shots and bring home that oh so figurative bacon, it’s always refreshing to know that there are women out there being their own boss and doing it in style.
While they may strut in their heels and sashay in their pencil skirts, they’re also cutting checks and cashing out big time. There’s nothing like a woman who knows how to call the shots in the boardroom without having to compromise her femininity and class.
This year has seen some great power moves by some of our favorite business-savvy women of color. From clothing lines to new television ventures, these female entrepreneurs cannot be denied. Hate them or love them, they’re net worth is piling up and their brands continue to glisten. In an effort to salute their success in business, take a look at Centric’s badass boss women of 2014.
Premadonna (Waist Gang Society)
You may not know her name, but you certainly know her clients. From Amber Rose to Khloe Kardashian and rapper Trina, Premadonna’s “Waist Gang Society” shaper has been worn by Hollywood’s curviest and sexiest women. Designed to get one’s waist in tip-top shape, the waist trainer has garnered over a million dollars in product revenue. Every woman wants the body of a goddess, and Premadonna, a Miami native, has cashed in on that utopian desire, all while making it a reality for those looking for a snatched waist. Now thanks to Premadonna, women have other options than going under the knife to achieve their beauty goals. Whether you’re sold on her product or not, you can’t deny her hustle.
Lisa Price (Carol's Daughter)
Headlines of bankruptcy and criticisms of her company’s acquisition did not keep Lisa Price from taking her beloved Carol’s Daughter to new heights. The iconic beauty brand is bigger and better than ever now that it’s being distributed in Target stores across the country and has expanded its business operations under one of the world’s biggest beauty companies, L’Oreal. We’d say Price has had quite the triumphant year. From making hair and skin products in the kitchen of her one-bedroom apartment in Brooklyn to becoming one of the most preeminent Black business women in America, there are very few entrepreneurs as inspiring as Price.
NeNe Leakes (NeNe Leakes Collection)
Ms. Leakes made it very known that she is “very rich, bitch,” and over the years she’s continued to prove naysayers wrong. Despite headlines focusing on the drama surrounding her castmates on “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” Leakes has kept her eye on the prize and her business empire. Earlier this year, the reality star and actress launched her own clothing line, The NeNe Leakes Collection for the Home Shopping Network. In just days the line sold out, proving that everything she touches turns to gold. In January 2015, Leakes plans on expanding the line to jewelry. Not to mention, she’s currently working on new shows through her own production company NeNe Leakes Entertainment, and is starring in Cinderella on Broadway alongside KeKe Palmer. And to think all this started from reality television.
Tamar Braxton (Tamar Braxton Collection)
She’s beat, snatched and coined up to capacity. Aside from having a massively successful singing career, and two hit reality shows, Braxton is now the co-host of the Fox daytime show, “The Real,” and during the holidays launched her own clothing line, the Tamar Collection. And just when you think the wife and mother could not juggle enough, she’s also working on releasing her very own cognac. The checks just keep rolling in.
Wendy Williams (Wendy Williams Productions)
As polarizing as she is, you can never take Wendy Williams’ hustle away from her. Both loved and hated by many, Williams’ brand has morphed like no other. In addition to making the world laugh with her a mega hit morning talk show, “The Wendy Williams Show,” Williams has a QVC jewelry line called Adorn, a wig line and a production company, Wendy Williams Productions. This year her television brand took new heights as she hosted Centric’s Soul Train Awards 2014 and executive produced the Lifetime biopic “Aaliyah: The Princess of R&B.” Though the public generally loathed the TV original movie, Williams was unbothered. "Everybody got an opinion. Well I must tell you, whether you loved or hated, you watched," she said on her talk show. Say what you must about the 50-year-old television personality, she certainly knows how to keep us talking and her bank account full.
Nicki Minaj (Myx Fusions/Minajesty Perfume/Kmart clothing line)
She may not be the female JAY Z like she aspires to be, but she certainly knows a thing or two about making money and entrepreneurship. As if dominating the music charts wasn’t enough, Minaj has launched her own perfume fragrances, a clothing line through Kmart and is the co-owner of Myx moscato drinks. And just in case the checks weren’t enough, she’s also racked up endorsement deals with Beats Electronics and Viva Glam. Her impressive work ethic has paid off, making her the first and only female rapper to make Forbes’ Hip-Hop Cash list. Now that’s boss status.
(Photos from left: PreMadonna via Instagram, Chessa / London Entertainment / Splash News, Earl Gibson/BET/Getty Images for BET, Janette Pellegrini/Getty Images for National Association of Professional Women)