1. Fashion — (clothing line)
Problem: Having a couture brand that retails at prices only 1% of the world can afford, maybe 5% has to be backed by investors, legacy, trust funds to be able to generate the global revenue needed for profits considering distribution will be limited if not scarce. All of the above Kanye West does not have, look at the careers and line launches of Tom Ford and John Varvatos as examples of how it’s done, how and why it’s funded and then distributed. Also keeping in mind John’s line is sold heavily by Nordstrom Rack to support his next lines coming, liquidation down the chain is needed and Kanye does not have those deals in place. Both of these super successful fashion entrepreneurs built legacy inside of existing super legacy brands…Ralph Lauren & Gucci, they were not musicians buying their way into fashion.
Solution: If investors are there to support a SMALL couture line then launch and run that but it’s time to call Kohl’s and get probably about $10–15 million in a contract to design an affordable line for the masses, as strength is in numbers. This has not hurt the brand of Vera Wang who has much more history, success and legacy in couture then Kanye can build even in the next 5–10 years. Its also made Marc Anthony and JLO millions and they’re performers like Kanye…stick to artist business models that work. Also more importantly this would give you the ability to sell clothes you make to your FANS that would love to be able to buy/afford them.
2. Fashion — (sneakers)
Problem: The Yeezy sneaker is really a hot design and if it were even obtainable I would not buy it at $350.00 which I can afford, maybe 10 years ago in my 30s but even then I would not chase them with PR marketing of supply and demand issues that drive the price up to $1000.00 to get your hands on a pair…no sir! Here we are again at the legacy issue, it’s a pair of sneakers designed by Kanye West in partnership with another brand…it’s not a brand. It’s not going to be a sneaker turned into a company called Nike, or Reebok, etc it will fade out as all designs like this do. So smart business decision is larger distribution and the ability to create more designs… a good example to look at there is Tesla Motors and Elon Musk a similar model would help, a new Tesla is on it’s way for $33.5K!
Solution: Create a large amount of them with a very slight supply and demand PR campaign and distribution model but retail at $100.00. They will sell like hotcakes, get them in stores that Pharell has broken into over the years via the skateboarding and hipster markets that are boutique in the sense of local like ALIFE or Unbreakable as examples, but ensure you are in all major DMAs and distributed by the right “cool” locals shops. Look at the KarmaLoop model. Yes the company ran into issues but Greg had the model right and successfully was able to move local and specific “couture” but affordable brands via the web without creating brand dilution and too much market distribution, a great partnership between him and Pharell.
3. Fashion — (fragrance)
Problem: As far as I know you don’t have a Kanye West Fragrance
Solution: Simple, start one with your wife ASAP she has all the connections and business team to help you probably secure a deal pretty fast and get some upfronts on the contract for your liquidity problems considering she has and still makes millions in fragrance. Along with other artists like JLO, Beyonce, Britney Spears, Jessica Simpson and more.
4. Streaming Music –
Problem: Tidal since day one has had their own issues well documented in this article here http://www.businessinsider.com/story-of-how-aspiro-became-jay-zs-music-streaming-startup-tidal-2015-8 by James Cook and Business Insider. But evidently there is something here to build on.
I am sure Kanye’s new album got some serious money being released only on Tidal for the first week (a company he owns stock in) and evidently more money based upon a re-up for a second week and holding a release to Itunes and other digital distribution, however Kanye brought a lot of attention and downloads for the streaming app that was not “technically” ready for it. That’s not good for customer service or a what may be viewed as a threat play to Apple. Like a game of Poker, looks too much like a bluff here.
Kanye then hits Twitter with tweets that he would not work with Apple on selling his music…in my opinion that would mean Kanye is going SHORT on TIDAL when the smart play would be going LONG.
Let me explain, to me this looks like an attempt to get Apple interested in acquiring the company and Kanye getting a payday on the sale, of course he is looking at the Beats deal. However Beats was a strong established brand supported by 100’s of millions of dollars in revenue from products before it even launched a streaming business, more important to note the brilliant packaging, branding and HUGE celebrity TV commercials Dre and Jimmy put together to go LONG for a big payday…it worked. It was packaged for Apple from day one!
Solution: First get more upside, you are bringing more users and attention to Tidal than any other exclusive release it has done, (although the past 3 weeks it’s safe to say it was a combination of Beyonce and Kanye) so call your buddy and mentor Jay Z work out the technical kinks ASAP to support driving more installs of the app and more streams, then work out a business development deal that you get a larger payout if you can influence/broker a deal to Apple to acquire the company.
Once that deal is done, stop telling Apple you are not going to release on Itunes, for 2 reasons — 1. they know you will and 2. they don’t care if you don’t but they would like you to.
So go have a meeting and set the date for the Itunes release and show major support with some exclusive tracks just for Itunes.
Now you are forming a good partnership with them and can start talking about Tidal, long term strategy.
5. Music Touring –
Problem: Over the past few years Kanye’s album releases and tours are like that of his fashion ideas…small audience, huge production, wildly expensive and do not gain enough consumer reach.
Solution: Kanye needs an 18 month all out tour that doesn’t have a multi million dollar jumbo screen and promises fans a mix of the new music and the old that got him the wealth that he has not over extended. While on this major “grassroots” tour, have the right equipment on the tour to start producing tracks for the younger artists that are outselling you right now, the ability to be an artist and a producer is a blessing for Kanye. Every artist starts to sell to smaller audiences as they get older but having the opportunity to support, grow and make money on the new artists by creating their next platinum track is a HUGE opportunity.
Look at Eminem as an example here, yes he still outsells anyone his age as well as younger artists but he started building up his label again, producing for younger artists and doing more duets with the younger artists supporting their careers and his. And well Eminem really doesn’t need much money at this point in his life.
6. Asking Mark Zuckerberg for 1 Billion Dollars to Invest in Kanye West Ideas –
OK well this was just stupid first off I am sorry I can’t be subtle here, it’s pretty evident Mark does quite well investing in his own ideas. But that’s not even the big issue, here is why this was the worst idea…