The Atlanta rapper-turned-businessman found a moment to capitalize on a social trend, promote his own business, and donate to charity— all due to the sale of his “Dabbin Santa” sweaters.
Reportedly, 2 Chainz has made $2 million since the release of his sweatshirt earlier this holiday season.
While the sweater may seem fad-based, it makes for great conversation. Aside from the comical music video with 2 Chainz and Santa doing the “dab” dance, the hip-hop artist was able to put his money into the holiday spirit of giving.
In November, the Grammy-nominated artist gave free rent for a year as a gift to a disabled veteran and her son. He revealed how the situation was a bit personal because his dad was an Army veteran who passed away a few years ago.
“This was a case that needed a little help from the outside. It was a veteran household. I came from that, so I understand it. They had no furniture, they were living month-to-month. I just wanted to relieve some of that stress. I just felt like, if I gave them a year’s cushion, which no one ever offered me, it would be a good opportunity,” 2 Chainz explained to Forbes.
Dabbin Santa also gave him a window to reveal his clothing line. The “Watch Out” rapper has employed a team of 70 to oversee his merchandise launch. He explained in his Forbes interview that he and his team saw a clever way to market his line when the “dab” dance craze was born in 2 Chainz’s hometown of Atlanta.
A few designs later, the “dabbin Santa” sweater emerged.
“I had numerous amount of celebrities helping with the shirt. It was on the NFL, it was on TNT, it was on Good Morning America, it’s on ESPN . So I could not continue receiving those blessings without giving back at the end of the day,” the rapper said.
2 Chainz, whose real name is Tauheed Epps, co-founded the T.R.U. Foundation in 2012 with his wife to give back to lower-income areas of Atlanta.
“It’s all part of the Dabbin’ Santa craze. We had another family with four kids. They were caught up in a house fire, and they actually had burglar bars and they couldn’t get out. By the time they got out, the seven year old was in a wheelchair [due to brain damage from smoke inhalation]. He had to get physical therapy. So we bought them a minivan,” he said.
While the season was profitable for 2Chainz financially, his charitable acts are noteworthy.
“We could have spent this money on possessions,” said 2 Chainz. “But giving a family that needs it will actually go further for them and for me.”