Ian Somerhalder: Nikki Reed saved me from 8 figure debt from a failed business

Many of us have been concerned about Ian Somerhalder and Nikki Reed’s relationship since we learned that he threw away her birth control shortly after they started dating. Nikki and Ian denied that it was abusive or reproductive coercion, but it didn’t sit right with many of us. Plus Nikki hasn’t looked entirely comfortable with Ian in paparazzi photos and in event pictures lately, I’ll say that. It turns out that they were going through a lot behind the scenes. In a post for Nikki’s birthday, Ian thanked her for helping enable his latest business venture, a bourbon company with his Vampire Diaries costar, Paul Wesley. Ian and Paul launched their company, Brothers Bourbon, this month. Ian wrote that Nikki was instrumental in helping him start this venture because she helped him get out of debt that had reached eight figures! That’s at least ten million dollars. Here’s what Ian wrote on the Instagram post, above.

This mama. This human.

I owe you such gratitude for it all. What many of you may not know is this woman is the reason I was actually able to build @brothersbondbourbon . I’ve never disclosed this publicly, but this woman worked selflessly for 2yrs to build me out of a terrible business situation I got myself into. Before Nik and I got together I built a company while shooting TVD that was important to me. I invested heavily, I made huge personal guarantees to banks. However due to greed and fraud within that company and fraudulent activities from our biggest customer, not to mention the temporary collapse of the oil and gas industry – I was left in an EIGHT- FIGURE hole. It was awful. A true nightmare day in and day out. I had to travel the world weekly to pay for massive monthly six-figure bank notes and ended up in the hospital 4 times in 2 years. This woman here decided that she didn’t want to see her husband ruin his body/mind/spirit and pulled up her bootstraps and got down in the trenches assembling a team to get to the negotiating table to find a way out. She devoted her life to getting me out of that mess and it almost killed her along the way. I am where I am BECAUSE of this woman. Brothers Bond Bourbon is actually here today because of this woman. I was able to start my life over because of this woman.

Needless to say it’s been the most eye opening and truly humbling experience. Painful as hell but as a family SHE got us through. It’s unreal. I owe her my health, my life and my sanity. Brothers Bond for me, is the physical representation, the manifestation to build a company designed to do good in the world by bringing people together and investing in our collective future to stop climate change and change the mental and physical health of this nation and this world.

I honor this woman and appreciate her more than anyone I could ever imagine.

Happy 33 you incredible angel of a person. The light you radiate into our household and this planet is beyond inspiring. You are a superwoman. You made it possible for me to live, build my dreams, and to start my life over. The world needs people like you.

Ian aka Baby Daddy

[From Instagram]

Ian posted this on Saturday and it was his way of wishing Nikki a happy 33rd birthday. I checked and Nikki’s birthday was Monday, May 17th. It’s nice that he’s acknowledging how instrumental she was in helping turn his finances around, and from what I can see they’re not that demonstrative on social media about each other. I tried searching to find the business Ian had which got him so deep in debt. I couldn’t find anything apart from his foundation, which he started in 2010. I took a course which explained why you can make so much more money as an entrepreneur by taking on investors. It made sense, but it’s also scary because you could end up in a situation like Ian’s. That’s incredible that Nikki stepped up and helped him get out of that. So many women work tirelessly to help their husbands succeed and get taken for granted.

2020 Vanity Fair Oscar Party

Nikki Reed and Ian Somerhalder arrive at the 2020 Vanity Fair Oscar Party held at the Wallis Annenbe...

Nikki Reed and husband Ian Somerhalder leave the Giorgio Armani Pre Oscar Party

Paparazzi photo is from February, 2019. Event photos are from February, 2020. Credit: Backgrid and Avalon.red

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52 Responses to “Ian Somerhalder: Nikki Reed saved me from 8 figure debt from a failed business”

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  1. milliemollie says:

    His birthday post for his wife who saved his dumb ass was all about him and then turned into an ad for his new business. He should be friends with Justin Timberlake.

    Also why admitting to so much debt and failed businesses in the same post that promotes your new business?!

    • Kebbie says:

      Completely this. It was straight out of Timberlake’s playbook. “Me, me, me, happy birthday to her, me, me, me.”

      So gross. And all the comments on his post were about what a great tribute it was to her 🙄

    • Jamie says:

      Lol, I noticed that too! He makes her birthday post all about himself.

    • LahdidahBaby says:

      Yes! And I dunno, I realize it’s superficial to talk about someone’s looks, but I’m talking about his LOOK rather than his looks when I say he appears manic to the point of nutty…something in his eyes…and I find it beyond off-putting…more like scary. I like her, and I hope she will just walk away from him.

    • North of Boston says:

      Yup! Spot on!

    • Me says:

      So very self-involved—and not for nothing, when you end up becoming your husband’s mother as well as your kid’s mother, that is the beginning of the end.

    • lucy2 says:

      Wow, that is pretty bad. Even the photo is all about him.

      I hope she has some ownership in the company she just helped him build, should their marriage ever dissolve, but I doubt it.

  2. Silver Charm says:

    He never mentions her by name in that post???

    Also I don’t know the ins and outs but it seems like Ian was the one who wasn’t holding up his end of the deals and he owed people money over it.

    • Kebbie says:

      Never mentions her by name but drops the name of his new bourbon several times. What a catch he is.

      And the photo he chose of him and his bourbon in the forefront, her behind him, as a celebration of her birthday? 🤮

    • DS9 says:

      This mother of my child…

      That framing is disgusting in light of everything else.

    • milliemollie says:

      Um, she got a “Nik” and a few “this woman”, I don’t know what you’re complaining about:D

  3. MerlinsMom1018 says:

    8 figures!!!!

  4. Melissa says:

    This story makes the birth control one seem more sinister – like was he trying to trap her for money too? Ppl do desperate things for money. My eyes bulged out at the 8 figures!! Truly just Hope she is happy.

  5. Sally says:

    As someone who has been continuously taken advantage of financially for years now, by people who I THOUGHT were close to me I can only tell her this: Run. Frigging run. And find a safe space to heal because DAMN it’s a process!

  6. Watson says:

    Nina dobrev dodged a bullet!!

  7. ThatgirlThere says:

    What in the world did she do to help him? I haven’t seen her in movies or anything at all in these past several years.

    • Summergirl says:

      i’m wondering the same.

    • Robyn says:

      She owns a fairly successful jewelry company. I don’t know about “clearing up 8 figures of dirtbag debt” successful, but it’s a cool product – made from recycled precious metals from electronic waste.

    • lucy2 says:

      Very few acting credits in recent years, I’m guessing the jewelry company (pretty pieces, cool concept) and instagram sponsorships.

      I’m very curious what business he was in that an oil/gas temporary collapse hurt him financially. Isn’t he some big environmental guy?

    • osito says:

      She may have a great money management team that she utilized to advise them on how to lower payments or negotiate on their behalf. She had (has?) a pretty successful jewelry line, and she might have just been much better at saving, planning, and investing than one would think, so once the terms were amenable, she probably paid the debt, or enough to refinance it. That’s my best guess.

      ETA: Fan/Industry conventions can bring in really good money for people with name recognition, so she probably cleaned up on that circuit in the years after Twilight. He mentions traveling weekly to help pay his debt, and I’m fairly certain he’s referencing con appearances.

      • H says:

        I met her at a Twilight convention. She was nice. Autographs and pics were expensive. So, she could have done that for a few years and saved her $.

    • Theia says:

      Those sweet, sweet Twilight residuals. $$$

  8. Delphine says:

    A bourbon company designed to do good in the world! And bring people together! And stop climate change! Get this man his Nobel Peace Prize already. 😒 Idk I see red flags all over this. He is lucky to have her, or more like he doesn’t deserve her. Run girl. Run.

  9. Robyn says:

    This is just an ocean of red flags. Ooof.

  10. Case says:

    He seems smug and phony to me. I get such a bad vibe.

  11. Jess says:

    Ugh, so his idiotic business mistakes almost “killed” her and landed him in the hospital multiple times?! Could he be more dramatic, lol. Sounds like she used her twilight money to bail him out. Don’t like him and never will, plus he turned a birthday post about her into an entire piece about himself and his business, gross and narcissistic.

  12. Soupie says:

    He was on Kelly Clarkson’s show recently and didn’t mention any of this. I guess they (PR?) felt timing was not right? I don’t see how it would have affected anything to at least make a simple reference to it.

  13. DS9 says:

    Abusive men love to tell everyone how important their partner is to them and how they can’t live without them and that’s why you can never leave and why they have to control your every move.

    She very well likely did save his business but that doesn’t mean their dynamic is healthy or that he isn’t controlling. These dudes like to frame this crap as evidence of how good they are to their partner, that no one else would value them like this.

    Also, you’re eight figures in debt, your wife is clawing you out, and you still decided it was time to procreate? Yeah, total red flag.

  14. Sid says:

    His shares of that bourbon company should all be in her name, but they probably aren’t. This guy. SMH.

  15. SusanRagain says:

    He is attractive looking, I will give him that much.
    But looks fade. And his me, me, me all about me will last forever.

    I agree with several posts above, very much.
    #1. Once you become the mother to him, the end has started.
    #2. Having been screwed over financially by 2 siblings, never again. I mean never.

    Also, why didn’t he realize he’s too stupid to run his own business, hire a good lawyer, file bankruptcy and stay in his lane of acting?

    So, she somehow “saved” him, huh?
    Well, good luck with that! It will never end.
    $5 says he cheats on her and/or dumps her in the next 5 years.

    He is No Prize!

    • xdanix says:

      While I think your suggestion makes a lot of sense, I’m not sure how well that would go down with his ego. He doesn’t seem like the type to be able to do that. Plus, I’m not sure how successful he’d be just sticking to the old acting lane- he’s only done one show since TVD ended. Or, to be more accurate, he’s only filmed one project that’s got released that I know of since TVD. In fairness to him, he could have done more and it might just not have been released yet- I know that that can happen with acting, that you film stuff that doesn’t see the light of day for a while. But yeah, I only know of that one show that he’s done- and not only did it get cancelled after just one series of about 10 episodes, it was meant to be BAD-bad.

  16. Asking for a friend says:

    All I can see in that first photo is a conman. Agree with others who are calling his behavior abusive. Also, she looks unhappy in most of those photos. I hope for her sake that I’m wrong on all counts.

    • GRUEY says:

      She does look beyond unhappy. I know that look. I have seen it in my own face with photos of my ex. Like her face hasn’t even known a smile in a long long time, likes it’s forgotten how almost.

      Anyway he’s fug ass at this point. He looks high in these red carpet pics imho. Just the way he’s twisting his body all around and squinting.

  17. Winnie Cooper’s Mom says:

    I have no idea if this is related to the business he’s speaking of, but I do know that his family owns a popular pizza place in Mandeville, LA. I truly doubt this is what he’s referencing though, bc 8 figures wouldn’t make sense in that scenario. Plus the pizza place has been open since 2012 and seems to be a successful establishment.

  18. Sue says:

    Throwing out your wife’s birth control + calling yourself Baby Daddy on a narcissistic ad about your business on her birthday = Red Flags R Us.
    8 figure debt? Was Vampire Diaries that successful? Did the minor actors in Twilight get that huge of a paycheck? How does one lose that much money?

    • Kebbie says:

      He said he made huge personal guarantees to banks, I’m guessing he took out loans he couldn’t afford and the interest added up as the business failed. So he lost a bunch of borrowed money.

  19. SayWhat?! says:

    I don’t like it. What does this guy bring to the relationship? Have heard similar stories where smart successful women help their husbands out hugely and it is a massive emotional and financial drain on the woman while the man gets off relatively unscathed and usually leaves the relationship.
    He should have just declared bankruptcy instead of pulling her down. I definitely think Nikki deserves better!

  20. FrontPorchSittin says:

    He used to have a handmade furniture business centered in Louisiana – I think it was all about reclaimed wood/sustainable practices/etc. *Googles* Yep. It was called Built of Barnwood, and it looks like he was in business with his actual brother that time.

    So I’m thinking that Brothers Bond Bourbon isn’t just named for the fictional TVD bros…it’s potentially a jab at his actual brother and former business partner?

  21. FHMom says:

    She was in a failed HBO series with him. She played his estranged wife. I had no idea who she was at the time, but she looked shockingly awful. I don’t know if she has any close family or friends, but she really needs to get out of that relationship. I don’t doubt that it almost killed her. She looked sickly in that HBO show.

    • North of Boston says:

      I still remember her from the fiasco that was Sleepy Hollow. That show started with a wacky premise, a great cast including 2 leads with great chemistry and became a surprise success on Fox. And then for some reason (racism, sexism, general bro-dude culture) TPTB decided to marginalize the POC female lead Nicole Behari and focus instead on a bad actress playing a boring breathy corset wearing character. When the audience wouldn’t go for that, they brought in Nikki Reed to play a nonsensical not quite as breathy but still boring corseted character. And then the show got cancelled.

      So she kind of annoys me in general due to that, but even so I feel bad for her if what IS is showing us is anywhere near how he is to her IRL (self-centered man-child who doesn’t know how to manage his own affairs)

  22. nicegirl says:

    The ‘this woman’ parts kinda freak me out

  23. sassafras says:

    If he’s from Louisiana, maybe he invested in some oil & gas venture there? There’s quite a bit of that industry on and off-shore. But ten figures. Whoo. I mean, is he Exxon?

    And agree with everyone else that red flags abound here.

    • FrontPorchSittin says:

      Reclaimed barnwood furniture. How do you get that far underwater in that industry?

      • Kebbie says:

        I can’t imagine the collapse of the oil and gas industry would really affect a business like that either. I think it had to be something else.

  24. LeonsMomma says:

    I know some people who bought a house on the Mississippi Gulf Coast from his brother, who was building houses there on spec, but somehow failed (in what is in a BOOMING market there). Maybe that was part of it. Also, I guess financial smarts doesn’t run in the family.

  25. Kkat says:

    So what did she have to do that almost killed her, to get HIM out of debt?

  26. Tess says:

    So many red flags with this one. EIGHT figure debt? I know she probably has Twilight money but EIGHT figures?!? What was HE doing to pay down his own debt? And what did SHE have to do to get EIGHT figures paid down? It’s all sus, and she can’t even trust him financially after that. Just throw the whole man away and leave sweetie.

  27. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I love him. He’s freaking hot. And I feel sorry for Nikki lol. Didn’t read the comments this time, probably get sandblasted, but he’s a turd. Yeah yeah I love him, but I do that knowing he’s a narcissistic turd bucket. I’m quite sure Nikki works her ass off for his ego. His birthday wish, while acknowledging his wife is amazeballs, manages to mention his new venture more than once. The whole thing is about what she did for HIM. Lovable pile o’ feces.

  28. Call_me_al says:

    He’s a financial vampire and whiny parasitic narcissist. Run.

  29. Annie says:

    It’s not the first time Nikki puts everything on the line for a man. She also financed her ex-husband Paul McDonald’s album. It didn’t do so well and neither did the short term marriage. I just hope Ian treats her well. I feel like Nikki has always needed to be protected and ends up taking care of men instead, who have never been exactly kind to her in return.

    I wish we empowered women more to not feel like it’s their job to fix men or be responsible for their success. Stop giving them every piece of you.