Forbes estimates the rapper's net worth is $1.3 billion

By Ashley Boucher
April 24, 2020 08:30 PM
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Kanye West is now a billionaire, according to Forbes.

The rapper is claiming that his net worth is more than $3 billion — which would make him wealthier than other famous billionaires, such as Oprah Winfrey, whose net worth is estimated at $2.6 billion.

While West has achieved the 10-digit milestone in his wealth, Forbes is reporting that his net worth is much lower than the rapper claims.

Between West's many assets — including Yeezy, his music label and real estate — and his debt, Forbes estimates the 42-year-old rapper is worth $1.3 billion, according to a report Friday.

Despite the business magazine's analysis, West maintains that his net worth is higher, and reportedly texted Forbes, "It’s not a billion. It’s $3.3 billion since no one at Forbes knows how to count."

"We tend to look at self-appraisals somewhat skeptically," the Forbes report said. "Aside from the music, half of all this presumably belongs to his wife, though she’s no slouch and that math goes two ways."

Kanye West
| Credit: Michael Wyke/AP/Shutterstock

"Given the illiquidity of these myriad assets and the lack of independent backup, we’re giving all of this a 50% haircut: That’s about $125 million in assets, outside of his Yeezy crown jewel. Then, there’s debt: between mortgages, advances and other liabilities, we saw about $100 million that West is on the hook for."

The Forbes report then estimated West's $1.3 billion net worth, before noting that it's $300 million more than Kylie Jenner's net worth.

Bloomberg reported Friday that Yeezy is West's largest asset "by far," and a document reviewed by the outlet showed that "Bank of America Corp. valued the sneaker side of the business alone at as much as $3 billion last year."

David Choi, West's accountant, provided Bloomberg with "an unaudited balance sheet that pegs the rapper’s net worth at $3.15 billion and lists more than $200 million of other assets."

Yeezy shoes

However, Forbes pointed out that "West’s aggressive $3 billion self-appraisal is clearly based on the idea that the business is infinitely portable. It’s not. Taking Yeezy away from Adidas seems almost prohibitively cumbersome, if not contractually impossible. A safer way to value it: as a royalty stream, like music publishing or film residuals."

The outlet estimated that West receives about a 11 percent royalty of Yeezy revenue from Adidas, which produces and distributes the trendy sneakers.

Bloomberg called the relationship between Adidas and Yeezy — which expires in 2026 — "more of a profit-sharing agreement than a typical licensing deal."