SHE has a role in one of this year’s hottest Hollywood blockbusters and has tantalised fans with the possibility of two new albums.
He is heir to a $2.7 billion fortune, owns an entire football league and seems keen to use his wealth to push her fashion, film and beauty businesses worldwide.
Just over a year into their romance, it’s no wonder experts say Rihanna and boyfriend Hassan Jameel have replaced Jay-Z and Beyonce as the world’s number one showbiz power couple.
The 30-year-old Diamonds singer fell for Saudi tycoon Hassan, 29, in January last year.
They first caught the world’s attention as a couple six months later when they were spotted kissing in a pool in Spain.
Friends described Rihanna and the businessman — who counts Naomi Campbell as one of his exes — as “madly in love”.
They have since kept out of the limelight, but are said to be quietly focused on building a $3 billion dynasty that dwarfs that of superstar Beyonce and music mogul Jay-Z, who have an estimated $1.4 billion fortune through record sales and business ventures.
Brand strategist Leonard Kim told The Sun on Sunday it was all about “knowing your market”.
“When it comes to power couples, everybody in the west presumes Kim and Kanye would be the biggest,” he said.
“That’s because of her Armenian heritage linking her to the Caucasus region covering Russia, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia.
“However, her constant racy posts and sexy image are way too much for such a conservative country, let alone the Middle East.”
But Mr Kim said Rihanna had “huge appeal”, and that Jameel had been in the Saudi press and marked as one to watch in the Middle East since boyhood.
“He has the business connections and revenue to put the Rihanna brand everywhere in the 30 countries where his company operates,” he said.
“They have the potential to become a real power couple, with extreme wealth coupled with notoriety around the world and the potential to influence millions.”
Globetrotting Hassan Jameel is deputy president and vice chairman of his dad’s family firm, which owns the naming and sponsorship rights to the entire Saudi premier league.
The Abdul Latif Jameel firm, named after his dad, also holds the distribution rights for Toyota in Saudi Arabia.
Hassan Jameel’s wealth already easily beats that of Jay-Z, who has a $1 billion fortune and is the richest person in music, with investments in Uber, his entertainment firm Roc Nation and streaming service Tidal.
Rihanna has earned $317 million through record sales, beauty lines and movie roles.
Now she is set to star as super-hacker Eight Ball in heist movie Ocean’s 8 — released in June — alongside Sandra Bullock and Helena Bonham Carter.
And last week Rihanna teased fans with two provocative posts on her Instagram account, leading some to believe a new album is on the way.
One picture featured two TVs, one with static and another that seemed to show parts of a person’s body.
Rihanna captioned the post: “Didn’t they tell u?”
A day later she shared a soundless, five-second video clip which could have been taken from an unreleased music video, captioned only with the letter X.
Her last album, 2016’s Anti, peaked at number seven in Britain and she is said to be determined to put herself back at the top.
It was even claimed this week that she has enough material to fill two albums, delighting fans.
One film industry insider told The Sun: “She’s done movies before, but this one will certainly be her biggest to date,” the source said.
“And the whispers are that she could soon be in movies made for Saudi Arabia because of Hassan’s Saudi connections.
“That will expand her profile to areas of the world where she could never have expected to venture, and the wealth that will come with that will be dramatic.”
Rihanna is already the world’s best-selling artist based on certified sales, having shifted 230 million units of her music, beating even Elvis and Michael Jackson.
Mel Carson, a personal branding professional, told The Sun On Sunday: “Over the past 12 months Beyonce and Rihanna were neck-and-neck in the number of online searches,” she said.
“But while Beyonce was more searched for in the US, Australia, UK and South Africa, Rihanna was hands down top across the rest of the world.
“It shows how the view in the West can be skewed and doesn’t always reflect the most popular things worldwide.”
A similar comparison between Rihanna and Kim Kardashian gave almost the same results, although Rihanna beat Kim in the overall number of searches.
It was estimated she earned $92 million during the first month after the launch of her Fenty Beauty line in September 2017.
The brand also hit Saudi Arabia last week, and this week she announced the launch of lingerie firm Savage X Fenty.
Experts said Hassan, whose conglomerate does business in 30 countries in the Middle East and North Africa, could use his connections to boost her brands even more.
The couple — reportedly set to buy a mansion in Paris — are gaining on their A-list rivals with credentials that push them past the Hollywood and music elite.
But although Rihanna is strutting around with a billionaire on her arm, she is still a homebody at heart.
Her dad Ronald Fenty told The Sun on Sunday he was expecting Rihanna and Hassan to visit him at his home in the Caribbean island of Barbados, where she grew up.
“She talked about him a lot when she was here last. He sounds a great guy,” he said.
“Rihanna loves the water so she’d take him on a jetski or to the caves — anything to do with the water she loves.”
THE OTHER CONTENDERS:
BEYONCE and JAY-Z, worth $1.4 billion:
Hip-hop’s top pair — he has the money and power, she has the looks and voice.
Together they have shifted more than 200 million records, while their businesses such as streaming services and record labels put their net worth at more than a billion dollars.
GEORGE and AMAL CLOONEY, worth $663 million:
George has been on Hollywood’s movie A-list for decades and recently hit the financial jackpot thanks to his investment in a tequila brand.
Amal is one of the world’s leading human rights lawyers and both of them have worked closely with the UN.
KIM KARDASHIAN and KANYE WEST, worth $436 million:
She is the curvy model who made it big thanks to reality TV — and regularly breaks the internet with sexy snaps.
Rap maverick Kanye has adoring fans across the planet thanks to his revolutionary lyrics and ability to create a melody.
He has also broken into the fashion industry.
— Additional reporting: Andy Tillett
Originally published as Meet surprising new power couple