He became a drug dealer after quitting school and got arrested several times. One of his first singles was titled “Rubber Band Man” in recognition of the nickname, Rubber Band Man because he wore rubber bands on his wrist as a sign of how much money he was making.
However, it was not until 1999 that the rapper signed his first major-label record deal with LaFace, a subsidiary of Arista. He was later released by Arista and subsequently founded his record label.
He has since gone on to release ten studio albums with seven of his albums reaching the top five of the Billboard 200 chart. Aside from music, T.I has also starred in several movies, including “ATL,” “Takers,” and the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s “Ant-Man” series.
In recent times, T.I. has reinvented himself as an entrepreneur, pursuing several outstanding business moves. In this publication, Face2face Africa seeks to high T. I businesses and other ventures he has stakes in.
T.I. teamed up with Killer Mike to revive a historic seafood restaurant in northwest Atlanta. The restaurant was first opened in 1968 on Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway before it was closed in 2018. The rappers had planned to rebuild the restaurant in 2020 but COVID-19 derailed their plans although they purchased the property in 2018.
The rappers, who have been childhood friends, did not only purchase the property but the name, trademark, and recipe.
Grand Hustle Records
T.I. established the record label Grand Hustle Records (formerly Grand Hustle Entertainment) after he was released by Arista, in 2003. The label is based in Georgia and its roster has included 8Ball & MJG, B.o.B, Killer Mike, Young Dro, DJ Drama, Meek Mill, Chip, Travis Scott, and Trae tha Truth.
Grand Huslt Tech
Grand Hustle Tech is an investment arm of T.I’s empire. Through it, he has invested in several firms in Atlanta, including fintech app Mulaah and tech company, Sudu.
T.I. is also into clothing. He is behind A.K.O.O. Clothing, which he defines as “upscale urban apparel”. The brand was inspired by American culture. The brand sells clothing, fashion bags, and accessories. He co-founded the clothing line in 2008 with his manager Jason Geter.
Buy The Block
The rapper’s Buy Back the Block program, in conjunction with APD-Urban Planning and Management and Dynasty Real Estate Development, buys properties in the neighborhood he grew up in, and flips them for affordable housing for the community.
Like many of his contemporaries, T.I. recently announced that he was spearheading a real estate community in Atlanta as a way of giving back to his community. The affordable housing project is located near the city’s west side Bankhead Highway where the rapper grew up. He bought property near Atlanta’s Bankhead Highway in 2019 and later sold it to Missouri developer Vecino Group. The rapper is now collaborating with the developer to construct affordable housing units on the land.