Kardashian West’s net worth rises to $1 billion thanks to KKW Beauty and famous shapewear company Skims, putting her on Forbes’ World’s Billionaires List.
When Kim Kardashian West was first listed in Forbes in 2011, it was clearly a count of her Twitter followers: 6.6 million, only below Barack Obama and slightly higher than Ashton Kutcher.
Five years later, she was on the cover of Forbes due to her successful smartphone game, which earned her $51 million that year. For the first time, she has been added to the list of the World’s Billionaires.
Kardashian West is now worth $1 billion, up from $780 million in October, according to Forbes, thanks to two profitable businesses—KKW Beauty and Skims—as well as cash from reality shows and sponsorship partnerships, as well as other smaller acquisitions.
Kardashian West launched KKW Beauty in 2017, inspired by her half-sister Kylie Jenner’s success with Kylie Cosmetics. She took a page from Kylie Jenner’s textbook, using a similar direct-to-consumer model that strongly relies on social media marketing.
Her first release, 300,000 contour kits, sold out in less than two hours. By 2018, the company had expanded into eyeshadows, concealers, lipsticks, and fragrances, generating over $100 million in sales.
When Kardashian West revealed her cosmetics line in 2017, she told Forbes, “It’s the first time I’ve stepped away from licensing agreements and transitioned into becoming an entrepreneur.”
She cashed in on that stake last year when she sold a 20% stake in KKW Beauty to cosmetics giant Coty for $200 million, valuing the firm at $1 billion.
Although Forbes believes the number is inflated, Coty, which also purchased 51 percent of Kylie Cosmetics in 2020, is notorious for overpaying. Her remaining 72 percent stake is now valued at about $500 million.
Then there’s Skims, Kardashian West’s shapewear collection that debuted in 2019. She collected funds from fashion industry insiders such as Net-a-Natalie Porter’s Massane and Theory’s Andrew Rosen, and used her huge social media presence to shill the brand—she currently has 69.6 million Twitter followers and 213 million Instagram followers.
She quickly shifted the emphasis to loungewear after the pandemic, as shoppers became more comfortable in comfy clothes for the sofa rather than smoothing their stomachs beneath evening gowns.
Kardashian West holds a controlling interest in Skims, a privately owned company that has not reported its earnings. According to a source familiar with Skims, the shapewear business is valued at about $500 million. As a result, Forbes figures her Skims share is worth $225 million, enough to boost her fortune to $1 billion.
The remainder of Kardashian West’s fortune is kept in cash and savings such as real estate. According to Forbes, she has raised at least $10 million pretax a year since 2012, thanks to paychecks from Keeping Up With the Kardashians, sponsorship partnerships, and ventures such as the aforementioned smartphone game and her now-defunct Kimoji app.
She also owns three homes in Calabasas, northwest of Los Angeles, as well as a wealth of blue-chip investments, including stock in Disney, Amazon, Netflix, and Adidas, which her soon-to-be ex-husband Kanye West gave her for Christmas in 2017.
But it is the businesses she has established and flourished with the usual Kardashian flair for self-promotion that, lands her on the World’s Billionaires list.