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Is Kanye West still a billionaire?

Can Ye still claim billionaire status?

Kanye West
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Kanye West‘s career is on a sharp downturn.

The formerly-popular rapper appears to be publicly spiraling, to such severe degree that calls for a conservatorship have started to arise online. Even his fans are looking on the 45-year-old with rising concern as his public appearances become more and more erratic and seemingly unhinged. His latest antisemitic rant was the killing blow for a number of Ye’s biggest partnerships, pushing many of the brands that stuck with him through his White Lives Matter boost and initial toxic remarks to finally part ways with the artist.

Even Adidas, a brand West proclaimed would never drop him, has officially cut ties with the 45-year-old. This is particularly ironic given recent comments from West, who broadly declared that “I can say antisemetic things and Adidas can’t drop me.” The decision by Adidas, along with a full five other brands and partnerships, leaves West with very few avenues to generate income. Spotify, and similar music streamers, have yet to remove his music from their libraries, but a few more vitriolic statements from West could see even his music impacted as well. All of the severed ties are taking a heavy financial toll on West, and sparking questions about his status as a billionaire.

Is Ye still a billionaire?

Kanye West
Brad Barket/Getty Images for Fast Company

West’s increasingly unpredictable behavior is sparking major concern among his fans, many of whom are seeking real, tangible solutions. The tendency of the public to grimly enjoy a celeb breakdown is once again on full display, even as others call for the media fixation to cease. We’ve already seen clear examples of what this kind of negative attention can yield — in instances like those surrounding Britney Spears, for one example — and continuing on this toxic path could lead to major issues, not just financially but physically and mentally. Despite all of the horrible things he’s said, West deserves some degree of grace and consideration, not to be a side-show.

Despite the clear need to step in and offer West help, his words are hugely damaging, and it’s right of his many partners to step back and detach themselves from the spiraling artist. To maintain their partnerships would come across as implicit support of his statements, and that’s not something any brand wants to do.

As such, nearly all of Ye’s former business partnerships have dissolved over the last several weeks. He’s left with very few of his former income revenues, and his net worth has taken a major blow. According to Forbes, West is officially out of the billionaire club. The former fat cat is still listed as a minor billionaire on Celebrity Net Worth, which claims he’s worth around $1 billion these days, but Forbes estimates that he’s worth far less. The publication instead puts Ye’s net worth at around $400 million, a far cry from his former billions.

The remainder of West’s wealth is tied up in “real estate, cash, his music catalog and a 5 percent stake in ex-wife Kim Kardashian’s shapewear firm, Skims,” according to Forbes. Several of the rapper’s upcoming projects seem to have been shelved, leaving him without that future income potential, and the loss of nearly all his partnerships leaves West with few options for future earnings.

While some people, incensed by West’s consistent inflammatory statements, might feel a touch of schadenfreude at his current predicament, try not to celebrate too hard. Yes, West’s many outbursts are horrific, and absolutely should be viewed as unacceptable, but the man is clearly struggling, and even he deserves grace as he (hopefully) finds help.

Nahila Bonfiglio
About the author

Nahila Bonfiglio

Nahila carefully obsesses over all things geekdom and gaming, bringing her embarrassingly expansive expertise to the team at We Got This Covered. She is a Staff Writer and occasional Editor with a focus on comics, video games, and most importantly 'Lord of the Rings,' putting her Bachelors from the University of Texas at Austin to good use. Her work has been featured alongside the greats at NPR, the Daily Dot, and Nautilus Magazine.