AceShowbiz - Kanye West is looking to build his own empire in Russia. The rapper plans a trip to Moscow later this year to meet President Vladimir Putin, hold Sunday Service performances as his first-ever shows in Russia and expand his business ventures into the country.
According to his confidant and strategic advisor Ameer Sudan, travel plans are currently in the works for the Atlanta native, who has legally changed his name to Ye, to visit the country in spring or summer, depending on his schedule. Sudan is helping to coordinate the arrangements with attorney Scott Balber, the managing partner of Herbert Smith Freehills' New York office.
Balber's clients include Azerbaijani-Russian billionaire real estate developer Aras Agalarov, who is sometimes known as the Donald Trump of Russia, and his musician son Emin Agalarov. Sudan tells Billboard he and Balber are acting as liaisons between Ye and the two businessmen.
Sudan says that West is working on new business deals with the Agalarovs that would likely to increase his net worth to more than $10 billion. He, however, would not disclose details of the business deals.
The "Gold Digger" spitter also plans to collaborate musically with Emin to raise the latter's profile in the U.S. As for the Sunday Service shows, they will likely be held at the Crocus City Hall theater or Grand Sports Arena at the Luzhinki Olympic Complex. Ye plans to invite Putin to attend the gospel performance as a special guest, according to the news outlet.
With his plans to expand his business in Russia, Sudan says the country is going to be "a second home" for Ye. He added, "He will be spending a lot of time out there."
West has previously expressed his adoration to Putin. Back in November, he compared himself to the 69-year-old president, calling himself "Young Putin" during an interview on "Drink Champs" podcast. The Yeezy designer is also a supporter of Trump, who is Putin's friend.
Russia is currently a center of conflict after it sent about 100,000 troops on the Ukraine border for a possible invasion. The White House gave a statement that President Joe Biden had voiced the "deep concerns" regarding this.
The U.S.'s National Security Advisor hinted that President Biden warned Putin during a two-hour phone call on Tuesday, January 11 that American troops could be used to defend Ukraine if Russia tries to invade the country.