Kanye West Net Worth
There have been a lot of hip-hop rappers that have made it big in the industry but few have become as famous and as wealthy as Kanye West. One of his great achievements is to have been the first rapper to be worth at least a billion dollars. It was just in 2020 that Forbes officially declared West to have broken the billion dollar mark, when he was valued at approximately $1.3 billion.
Although Kanye is definitely one of the biggest names in the rap music industry, he actually has a lot of other profit revenues outside of music. Unbeknownst to many, he is also a producer, fashion designer and entrepreneur. Kanye West’s net worth comes from a combination of revenues from all these channels.
Early Life and Education
Kanye Omari West was born on the 8th of June in 1977 in the city of Atlanta in Georgia. His parents actually divorced when he was barely a toddler, after which he lived with his mother in Chicago, Illinois, where he spent his growing up years. He attended the Polaris School for Individual Education in the suburbs of Illinois. When he was 10 years old, West traveled to Nanjing, China, where his mother had landed a teaching job. He learned the local language well very quickly at the time but had forgotten most of it when they went back to the United States.
Kanye showed an early inclination towards the arts, writing poetry at 5 years old. While in 3rd grade, Kanye demonstrated a natural skill for drawing as well as music.
By the time he was in 7th grade, Kanye was composing his own music and selling them to artists. His mother, who was a professor of English at the Chicago State University, was very supportive. She took him to local recording studios so he could develop his art and also eventually represented him as his manager. Kanye eventually met No I.D., a renowned DJ and producer, who became his mentor.
Kanye graduated from high school and received a scholarship to the American Academy of Art in Chicago. He also enrolled in the Chicago State University for an English course. But he finished neither degrees, choosing to drop out of college in favor of pursuing his music career.
During the course of his music career, Kanye West has accumulated 21 Grammy wins and an impressive 69 total nominations. But he was not recognized as a rapper right away, starting instead as a producer. His music career has become a large contributor to his net worth.
From 1996 to the beginning of the millennium, West produced a number of albums for his own rap group, the Go-Getters, and for many other well-known rappers at the time, like Foxy Brown, Harlem World, Goodie Mob, and D-Dot or the Madd Rapper.
Ironically, it was his massive success as a rap music producer that kept him from getting his much sought after a break to become a rapper himself. He landed a deal with Roc A Fella Records, where he was an in-house producer.
But it wasn’t until he got into a car crash in late 2002 that he finally had his big break. With his jaw wired shut because of the accident, Kanye recorded his song “Through the Wire” which became a hit.
A couple of years later, West finally released his first album The College Dropout after several postponements. The wait was worth it though because the album garnered 10 Grammy nominations and soon went triple platinum in the United States. He released his second album, Late Registration in 2005, and this sold over 2.3 million copies in the US alone within a couple of months.
Several albums soon followed, each of which was a great hit, collecting multiple Grammy nominations.
Kanye West’s career as a rap artist has definitely been a massive success. But he has recently turned his sights on other areas.
It is his Yeezy brand, in particular, that is responsible for a considerable and consistent stream of revenue for the rap artist. With his brand, Kanye had formed a partnership with Adidas. And it became one of the best collaborations between an artist and a brand. In 2019, the partnership raked in an unprecedented $1.5 billion in sales, which resulted in West earning more than $150 million for that year, before taxes.
Just in February of this year, Kanye tweeted that he had refused Apple’s offer of a $100 million deal. He did not explain much of what the deal involved, and the tweet had since been deleted. He also currently has a partnership with The Gap worth a cool $1 billion.
There are also current speculations that Kanye will be the new creative director at Louis Vuitton, replacing Virgil Abloh. West and Abloh have had plenty of creative collaborations over the years, starting when they first met as interns working for Fendi in 2009.
Kanye had also designed a shoe for Louis Vuitton some time ago, called the Louis Vuitton Don. This was also a title that he gave to himself in the lyrics of a song in his debut album “The College Dropout” in 2004.
Kanye West did not have a lavish childhood, growing up in a modest home in the neighborhood of South Shore in Chicago. But he definitely has a lavish taste. This includes his taste for homes. With all the income that he has, it is not really surprising that he can afford the majestic properties that he has in his name.
Among his most recent purchases is a property in Malibu that is currently being renovated, and a mansion in Antwerp, Belgium. In addition to these new acquisitions, West had also owned two multimillion dollar ranches in Wyoming. One of these is the Monster Lake Ranch, which he had already sold for $11 million last year. The second ranch is called the Bighorn Mountain Ranch, worth $14.5 million.
Also just recently, Kanye purchased a Hidden Hills estate that is just across the street from a property of his former wife Kim Kardashian. The couple split in 2021. They have four children together, two daughters North and Chicago, and two sons, Saint and Psalm.
His total real estate assets add about $120 million to Kanye West’s net worth.
Kanye West’s Net Worth Today
With all his real estate, business revenue and other assets combined, he is reported to be earning no less than $100 million per year. Most of this is courtesy of his Yeezy partnership with Adidas.
Kanye West’s net worth today is at a very impressive $6.6 billion. And it is continuing to grow by the day. He is considered to be in the top 3 richest black men in the history of the United States.
Illustration Credit: Jr_cartoon
I truly appreciate an enjoyed the history of Kanye West. He is a strange man but for some reason very interesting. Thank you very much.