Why Kanye West probably isn't $53 million in 'personal debt' -- and what he has to say about it

Kanye West has way more to say about the $53 million in debt he claims to owe.

The rapper continued speaking about his financial crisis on Twitter Tuesday. In the tweets, he may have given a couple reasons why he decided to disclose his financial situation to the world in the first place.

According to his tweets, people who knew about his financial problems would use that knowledge as leverage during negotiations.

But now that it’s out in the open, he feels they can’t use it against him anymore.




Contrary to West’s original statement that he’s $53 million in “personal debt,” however, TMZ reports that sources close to the rapper say the number is correct, but it isn’t exactly personal debt. It’s the amount he has taken out of his own pocket to fund certain aspects of his fashion and music companies. For example, he has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to build the sets for his last tour and make the short film “Cruel Summer.”

The site’s sources also say he has spent about $40 million over the three seasons of his fashion line. And although his Yeezy sneakers have sold well, West reportedly didn’t get a paycheck for the first year of the line and funded the design himself. (He’s also claimed Nike didn’t pay him any royalties.) He parted with Nike (and continues feuding with the company on his new song “Facts”) and announced he’d signed a deal with Adidas in 2013. That seems to be going better for him.




Since the money went into his business ventures, if those companies do default, West likely wouldn’t be held personally liable.

It should also be noted that West has plenty of earning power: His “Yeezus” tour was the second-highest-grossing of 2013, at $25 million.

Over the weekend, West made a very public request to Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg for $1 billion to fund the rapper’s ideas. Zuckerberg has yet to respond to West.

Over the past week, West was in good spirits at the listening party for his new album, “The Life of Pablo,” and fashion show. He then appeared as the musical guest on this past weekend’s “Saturday Night Live.” At the same time, he has been carrying on another new feud with on-and-off-again rival Taylor Swift.

BI reached out to West’s representatives for comment.

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