The Kanye West net worth count of $78 million comes from a study of his earnings from music, endorsements and other sources. West has earned a grand total of $243 million since 2004. That number includes $44 million from music sales and $131 million from concert tours. His mental breakdown and tour cancellation in 2016 cost him an estimated $30 million. Taxes cut $128 million from the Kanye West net worth total. What about West’s claims of $53 million in personal debt? Click here to skip to our debt analysis below.
Kanye West Net Worth Facts
|Kanye West net worth||$78,317,299|
|Kanye West net worth vs Kim K. net worth||Half as big|
|Kanye West net worth vs Jay Z net worth||1/6th as big|
|Kanye West net worth vs Drake net worth||About the same|
|Kanye West net worth vs Rihanna net worth||1/4 as big|
|Kanye West net worth vs Beyonce net worth||1/5 as big|
|Kanye West net worth vs Taylor Swift net worth||1/3 as big|
|Kanye West net worth vs Miley Cyrus net worth||1/3 as big|
|Kanye West net worth vs Kobe Bryant net worth||1/4 as big|
|Kanye West net worth vs typical net worth||1,209 x bigger|
There’s no doubt the Kanye West net worth stack is high. It’s 1,209 times bigger than the typical American household’s net worth of $68,000. However, compared to his peers, Ye’s net worth comes off on the small side.
Kanye West’s net worth is 7 times smaller than Jay Z’s $556 million dollar fortune. It’s slightly smaller than Drake’s $101 million and 4 times smaller than Rihanna’s net worth of $281 million. Beyonce’s holdings of $409 million are five times bigger than West’s. Kanye has four times less money than Taylor Swift’s $310 million and three times less than Miley Cyrus’ $197 million.
Kanye West Net Worth Over Time
|Kanye West net worth 2004||$1,863,419|
|Kanye West net worth 2017||$78,317,299|
|Kanye West net worth 2006||$7,804,172|
|Kanye West net worth 2007||$10,822,423|
|Kanye West net worth 2008||$20,557,925|
|Kanye West net worth 2010||$26,591,712|
|Kanye West net worth 2011||$38,808,203|
|Kanye West net worth 2012||$42,070,626|
|Kanye West net worth 2013||$57,339,453|
|Kanye West net worth 2014||$61,125,569|
|Kanye West net worth 2015||$65,018,681|
|Kanye West net worth 2016||$75,782,849|
The Kanye West net worth story started back in 2004. The star churned out a series of hit albums and concert tours, with his biggest the 2011 Watch the Throne tour with Jay Z. Sales of nearly 82 million singles and 21 million studio albums plus $55 million in endorsement deals from companies like Nike and Pepsi sweeten the pot.
Also see: Drake Net Worth
Kanye West Net Worth Sources: Music Sales, Endorsements, Concerts
The Kanye West net worth figure comes from sales of studio albums, live albums, singles, concerts, endorsements and investment earnings. The bottom line of each source is shown in the table below. The lion’s share of West’s net worth comes from concert income of $131 million. The singer also earned $44 million from music sales, $55 million from endorsements and $12.7 million from YouTube ad revenue. His 2016 tour cancellation will have far reaching implications for the Kanye West net worth sum. West didn’t just lose concert earnings from that tour but also future album sales and endorsement income.
Sources of Kanye West Net Worth
|Kanye West Studio Albums||$20,372,163|
|Kanye West Net Worth||$78,317,299|
|Singles (Kanye West Lead)||$16,301,682|
|Singles as Featured||$2,167,110|
|Total Kanye West Earnings||$243,427,845|
|Kanye Salary (avg)||$18,613,715|
Music Sales and Kanye West’s Net Worth
Kanye West’s career spans from the time of big album sales to the digital era. The Kanye West net worth number owes $44 million to music sales. That’s about 21% of the total. Newer stars see very little income from music sales, due to piracy and streaming.
Kanye West Net Worth from Music Sales
|Music Sale Type||Units Sold||Revenue||Kanye's Cut|
|Singles (West as lead)||81,918,000||$163,016,820||$16,301,682|
|Singles (West featured)||33,000,000||$65,670,000||$2,167,110|
The Kanye West net worth sum owes $20.3 million to studio album sales. West has released eight studio albums since 2004. The table below shows how each album kicks in to Kanye West’s net worth.
Kanye West Net Worth from Studio Albums
|Studio Albums||Year||Unit Sales||Revenue||Kanye's Cut|
|Total Album Sales||21,200,000||$232,988,000||$25,861,668|
|The College Dropout||2004||4,000,000||$43,960,000||$4,879,560|
|808s & Heartbreak||2008||1,700,000||$18,683,000||$2,073,813|
|My Beautiful Dark...||2010||1,400,000||$15,386,000||$1,707,846|
|Watch the Throne||2011||2,000,000||$21,980,000||$2,439,780|
|The Life of Pablo||2016||200,000||$2,198,000||$243,978|
|Other Kanye Albums||4,500,000||$49,455,000||$5,489,505|
Though album sales historically formed the biggest part of a pop star’s net worth, that’s not the case anymore. Streaming services and easy piracy have shrunk music sales by huge percentages, while other income sources for musicians have gone up. Even so, with eight platinum studio albums, two live albums, four mix tapes and 46 singles, the Kanye west net worth figures owe a great deal to studio work.
Industry experts put a top singer’s cut of music sales at 6.6% for each song sung and 4.5% for each song written. Since West writes his own music, 11.1% of all music sales add to Kanye West’s net worth.
Other albums include EPs, live albums and mixtapes. West’s collaboration with Jay Z, the Watch the Throne album, sold over 1.5 million copies in the U.S. alone. All in all, West’s non-studio albums have sold an estimated 4.5 million units, earning the rapper nearly $5.5 million in income.
Singles as Lead Artist
Singles sales pump $18.4 million into the Kanye West net worth tank. West has had an incredibly prolific music career. While his claims of being the best ever may be stretching it, very few solo artists share his category. Unit sales in the table below are estimates based on industry certifications. Revenue is based on a unit cost of $1.99 each, with Kanye West’s earnings for each song placed at 11.1% of the total.
Singles and Kanye West Net Worth
|West Singles||Unit Sales||Revenue||Kanye Cut|
|Jesus Walks (2004)||2,500,000||$4,975,000||$552,225|
|Gold Digger (2005)||6,000,000||$11,940,000||$1,325,340|
|Good Life (2007)||2,300,000||$4,577,000||$508,047|
|Love Lockdown (2008)||3,700,000||$7,363,000||$817,293|
|All of the Lights (2011)||4,600,000||$9,154,000||$1,016,094|
|Niggas in Paris (2011)||6,000,000||$11,940,000||$1,325,340|
|Other Kanye Singles||19,400,000||$38,606,000||$4,285,266|
|Kanye Featured Singles||33,000,000||$65,670,000||$2,167,110|
In addition to all West’s 46 singles as lead artist, he is also featured in an astonishing 78 songs by other artists. His earnings for those songs are much lower however, thanks to a smaller percentage cut and much smaller overall sales.
Also see: Taylor Swift Net Worth
Kanye West Net Worth from Concert Tours
The biggest portion of the Kanye West net worth figure comes from concert tours. Concert tours have increasingly become a music star’s bread and butter. Fully half of all Ye’s earnings come from concert tours.
West’s Touch the Sky tour in 2005 brought in an estimated $5,000,000 at the box office. Since pop stars keep about 85% of concert dollars, that gave West $4,250,000 in earnings for the tour. The Glow in the Dark tour paid West $26 million in 2008. 2011’s Watch the Throne tour slipped another $32 million into Kanye West’s net worth total. Finally, the Yeezus tour in 2013 gave West a hefty $42 million.
Concerts and Kanye West Net Worth
|Kanye Tour||Box Office||Kanye Cut|
|Touch the Sky (2005)||$5,000,000||$4,250,000|
|Glow in the Dark (2008)||$30,800,000||$26,180,000|
|Fame Kills (2009, cancelled)||$0||$0|
|Watch the Throne (2011)||$75,000,000||$31,875,000|
Another detail is the $0 earnings for the Fame Kills tour. That tour was originally a joint venture between West and Lady Gaga. Had it happened, it could have dropped another $40 million dollar bomb on Kanye West’s net worth.
The tour was cancelled shortly after West interrupted Taylor Swift’s VMA acceptance speech in 2009. It’s rumored concert promoters worried Gaga’s fans would shun the show because of the interruption. Whatever the reason, the Kanye money train kept chugging along, with box office revenues of over $50 million for West’s next two tours.
Kanye West Net Worth and Endorsements
Endorsements have added a probable $55 million to Kanye West’s net worth. While exact details of endorsement contracts aren’t released to the public, we do have info on some of West’s deals. West has made endorsement deals with Adidas, Nike, Pepsi, Boost Mobile and Luis Vuitton. Various media reports place the value of the Adidas deal at at least $10 million dollars.
Based on the value of that deal, we estimate the total contribution of endorsement deals at $5 million per year. At that rate, endorsements pump $55 million total into Kanye West’s net worth. That’s likely to change however since a cancelled tour and lagging album sales are likely to give would-be advertisers a touch of cold feet.
YouTube and Kanye West Net Worth
As of 1/12/17, West has made $12,950,864 from YouTube. Ye’s Vevo channel has scored nearly two billion views. Industry experts place the dollar value of 1,000 views at $7.60. West keeps an estimated 85% of that money. Adding in other YouTube views for Mr. West gives us our final Kanye West net worth from YouTube views of $12.9 million.
Kanye West Net Worth from YouTube
|Kanye YouTube Views||2,018,431,576|
|Kanye West Cut||$13,045,908|
|Earnings Per View||$0.0076|
Kanye West Net Worth in the Media
Most media estimates place Kanye West’s net worth squarely at $145 million. Those estimates are largely based on Celebrity Net Worth’s figure, which doesn’t list any source or data. A deep search online reveals no figure for the rapper’s wealth based on actual earnings. Instead, the estimates shown online either point to the Celebrity Net Worth number or just present the number with nothing to show their work.
Money Nation’s Estimate
Our deep research provides hard figures behind the Kanye West net worth count. West’s album sales and singles sales are largely known, as are his YouTube views. Concert earnings aren’t published but reliable estimates for total revenue are available online. Other numbers like endorsement earnings must be estimated. That said, estimates are based on known figures for general endorsement pay cited by industry analysts. Still, it’s possible Kanye West’s net worth is either higher or lower than our figure. The star could be worth as little as $60 million or as much as $110 million.
Also see: Kim Kardashian Net Worth
Kanye West Net Worth Calculations
Taxes take a giant slice out of the Kanye West net worth pie. West is in a 39.6% federal tax bracket. Mr. West also lives in California, which means another 13.3% in State taxes. That gives the star a sky-high 52.9% tax rate.
Applying that rate to West’s annual earnings gives a lifetime tax bill of $128 million.
Yeezus also likely has expenses. Cost of living, agent fees, staff, operating costs and keeping up with the Kardashians can’t be cheap. We estimate West shells out 20% of everything he makes to cover yearly costs. That’s a total expense bill of $51 million deflating the star’s wealth.
Our full table of Kanye West net worth calculations is below. Click to view the data in detail.
The chart above shows West’s earnings by year in the blue line. The green line represents Kanye West’s net worth. The big spikes in the blue line are big earnings boosts from periodic concerts. The $10 million earnings floor represents West’s baseline income from sales of albums and YouTube revenue.
The blue earnings line is like a pump that inflates the green Kanye West net worth line, pumping it up by degrees.
Kanye West Net Worth Calculations
|Year||Kanye Earnings||Taxes||Expenses||Investments||Kanye West Net Worth|
Also see: Wiz Khalifa Net Worth
Kanye West Net Worth: Is it Negative $53 Million???
So what about West’s personal debt claims? On 2/13/16, Kanye West tweeted that he is $53 million in personal debt. Does that mean a true Kanye West net worth figure of -$53 million? While that’s not impossible, the rapper has been known to say and do things to stay at the center of attention. It’s also possible for someone to have millions in debt and still have millions in net worth.
The chart below shows how improbable a dead-broke West would be. The blue line is the star’s estimated earnings. The green line is his calculated net worth. The orange line shows West’s claimed $53 million in debt. For that to be his net worth, he would have to have lost money depicted by the red line at the chart’s top. That’s over $300 million in losses.
That said, it’s entirely possible that West has spent a lot more than our estimates. The rapper may have bought extravagant homes or overspent on concert production. He may have racked up $53 million in personal debt. He may have even spent all the estimated $66 million in Kanye West net worth listed in this article. Our net worth figures are based on spending of 20% of income per year. That’s high for a music star. Even so, if West actually spent about 70% per year, he could well have a net worth in the negative millions.
Divorce Rumors and Kanye West Net Worth
As long as a divorce from wife Kim Kardashian stays in rumor territory, it won’t affect the Kanye West net worth total. So far the only sources we’ve found claiming imminent divorce are scandal mags. That said, Kim Kardashian has been divorced twice and earned a reported $13 million from the incidents.
If Kim and Kanye get divorced, will she take his money or will he take hers? It’s difficult to say. Kardashian has a solo net worth of $150 million. A divorced based on net worth alone might wind up in Ye’s favor. If the divorce is based on gender, it might drain some of the Kanye West net worth sum.
Either way, “we want prenup” may soon take on a whole new meaning for the rap star.