“I hope we taught by example,” the 71-year-old record executive exclusively told Us Weekly on Saturday, May 20, while promoting his partnership with WealthFlix.
Along with the “Cuff It” singer, 41, Mathew and Tina, 69, also share daughter Solange Knowles. The former couple were married for more than 30 years before calling it quits in 2011. He became a father again in 2010, welcoming his son, Nixon, 13, with Alexsandra Wright, as well as his daughter Koi, 12, with TaQoya Branscomb, in the same year.
While raising his daughters with Tina, the music manager prioritized exposing them to all sorts of different hobbies and career paths. “We’d take them to NASA, we would take them to science fairs, we’d take them to a library,” he told Us. “We’d take them to sporting events [and] entertainment, and we wanted to see what they gravitated towards.”
In the end, the Alabama native said “it was always entertainment” that captured the girls’ interest. By allowing Beyoncé and Solange, 36, to “really find their passion,” Mathew believes he helped his kids reach their full potential as artists. “One day, you’re gonna go to your passion and you try to do that sooner than later,” he explained.
Beyoncé was around the age of her eldest daughter, Blue Ivy, now 11, when she competed on the ‘90s series Star Search as a member of the band Girls Tyme alongside Kelly Rowland and several other performers. While they were unsuccessful on the competition show, the group later renamed themselves Destiny’s Child — and went on to become one of the biggest girl groups of all time.
“[Host] Ed McMahon shared, he says, ‘I don’t know why all of the people that constantly went on Star Search go nowhere professionally,” Mathew, who was previously the band’s manager, told Us. “It’s the people that lose [who were successful], and that’s why it’s important to talk about failure because it’s an opportunity to grow.”
In the year’s since the group’s breakup, Beyoncé — who also shares twins Rumi and Sir, 5, with husband Jay-Z — has released seven studio albums as a solo artist and has become the most-decorated artist in Grammys history. Solange — who shares son Daniel, 18, with ex-husband Daniel Smith — scored her own Grammy win in 2017 for Best R&B Performance.
While he’s proud of his kids’ many entertainment achievements over the years, Mathew’s current focus is on family and health. As Father’s Day approaches, the businessman — who revealed in 2019 that he was diagnosed with breast cancer — is cherishing every moment with his loved ones.
The professor has enjoyed spending time with his grandkids as they grow up, joking that his favorite part of being a grandfather is that he “can given ‘em back” to their parents at the end of the day.
Always hustling, Mathew is also sharing his business skills with others through his partnership with WealthFlix. The website — which is a joint venture between United Ventures and Future Media — helps aspiring entrepreneurs learn about wealth creation through exclusive networking opportunities, celebrity interviews, podcasts and more.
“What WealthFlix is doing is amazing, and that’s working with our next generations of entrepreneurs and sharing our successes and also our failures,” the Fisk University alum said. “I think that’s very important.”
With reporting by Mandie DeCamp