A company owned by Kanye West has received a multi-million dollar loans from the federal government as part of the Trump administration's coronavirus relief package. The official records were released online on Thursday by the U.S. Treasury's Small Business Administration.
The California-based Yeezy LLC is listed in the log as having received somewhere between $2 million and $5 million. Yeezy has also self-identified as being male-owned and a Black or African-American business, adding that 160 jobs were saved using the loan. The loan itself came as part of the Paycheck Protection Program, which came as part of the $2 trillion CARES Act, which was aimed to keep the economy afloat during widespread shutdowns. As The Daily Beast pointed out, California business records list West as the manager of Yeezy LLC
Given that the burgeoning sneaker empire reportedly made $1.5 billion last year, West's loan calls into question the nature of how the loans were distributed. Not to mention the major questions of conflict of interest, considering the rapper's outspoken support for President Donald Trump, which included multiple visits to the White House.
There's also the outrageously lavish lifestyle he leads with wife Kim Kardashian West and the fact that he openly bragged about recently reaching billionaire status. Back in November, he even spoke at the Fast Company Innovation Festival in New York about the success he'd been seeing with Yeezy and, in a very Kanye West move, even teased he might change his name to celebrate his accomplishments.
"Martin Luther King didn't get killed because he had a dream; he had something else he was going to talk about," West said at the time. "He talked about black empowerment, economic empowerment. When I did Forbes, I showed them an $890 million receipt and they still didn't say 'billionaire.' They don't want us to know that we can buy land; they don't want us to have the 100 percent ownership [that] I have at Yeezy. When people say it's crass to call yourself a billionaire, I say I might legally change my name to Christian Genius Billionaire Kanye West for a year until y'all understand exactly what it is."
On July 4, West also announced that he was running for president in November in a series of tweets. "We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future. I am running for president of the United States," he tweeted, along with the hashtag "2020 Vision."