ANTHM found his “come up” through hard work and perseverance. Growing up, he never knew his father, but was raised by a strong, single Ethiopian mother who taught him that nothing in life is handed to you. Ant took this "go-hard" principle and applied it to everything in his life, which translated into academic achievement. Despite the financial hardships they faced, he earned his way into Duke University, which opened up his world. It was also at Duke where he transitioned from poetry and spoken word to rhyming, finding his passion for emceeing. After graduating, ANTHM put his mic dreams on hold and accepted an offer to work as a trader at a Wall St firm. Although it was primarily a way to help his family, it also served to bring him to Manhattan, and ultimately one step closer to his dreams.
ANTHM owes much of his growth to Manhattan; both personally and as an emcee. Navigating through the cutthroat environment on Wall St, he acquired the instincts and edge to define his own future and developed the relationship that proved critical to his transition to hip-hop. His one-time Wall St mentor and now collaborator, DG, was the first person to recognize Ant's full potential - and agreed to back him - with the agreement that they would apply the same relentless quest for excellence to music that they didto finance. Trading by day and rapping by night, the two built out their independent label, AMG. As a young and talented duo, their narrative epitomizes both the American dream and entrepreneurship.