After months of inquiries, the hip-hop icon exchanged his financial records with Forbes. “There is only one number that West cares about. A billion dollars, like that. And he cares a lot,” reports the magazine.
Kanye was featured on Forbes’ cover last summer, outlining his successful Yeezy empire. But at the time, the publication did not declare him a billionaire, much to his dismay. He blasted them while speaking on the industry panel in November, and privately said that Forbes was “purposely snubbing” him.
When Forbes released its annual list of billionaires earlier this month, West was missing. “You know what you’re doing,” he said. “You’re toying with me and I’m not finna lye [sic] down and take it anymore in Jesus name.” He also said that Forbes was “purposely part of a media group” that was attempting to undervalue his self-made popularity on account of his race.
So he decided to make it official. On Thursday, West told his team to provide Forbes with “what we feel is an authentic numeric look into Kanye, Inc.”
He claims in his words and through paperwork that he’s worth more than $3 billion. West owns 100% of Yeezy, which is contractually tied to adidas for at least five-plus years. The Yeezy apparel division is not believed to make money. Based on documents, Forbes estimates the final revenue number for the shoes is closer to $1.3 billion.
West’s deal provides for a royalty of about 11%, which would place his Yeezy royalties over $140 million last year. Forbes notes that West’s “aggressive” $3 billion self-assessment is focused on the premise that the brand is indefinitely scalable, but separating Yeezy from adidas is “almost prohibitively cumbersome, if not contractually impossible.”
In conservative terms, a 10x multiple applied to West’s Yeezy cut of $140 million makes his stake worth about $1.4 billion. Due to the fact that the asset is not very liquid, Forbes reduced the value by 10%, arriving at $1.26 billion.
Kanye’s statement of assets supplied by his team lists just $17 million in cash and $35 million in stocks. The largest assets are $81 million in “buildings and improvements” and $21 million in land, including the Hidden Hills mansion he shares with his wife Kim Kardashian and four children, and a pair of $14 million Wyoming ranches. Documents reveal West’s G.O.O.D. Music label, his own recorded music, and publishing rights to be worth at least $90 million.
In the end, Forbes estimates Kanye’s current net worth at $1.3 billion, $300 million more than his sister-in-law Kylie Jenner and JAY-Z, who was declared hip-hop’sfirst billionaire in 2019.