The singer walked away from the British boyband at the height of their fame in 1995 to focus on a solo career, but quitting the group turned out to be a costly endeavour after record executives demanded $2.2 million (£1.5 million) from him.
He tells BBC Radio 4, "For reasons I can't go into because certain people like suing me - and they like winning - there was a big need for me to get out of my contract and out of that record company.
"I think I made a million or something in Take That and then it cost me a million and a half to get out of the deal. So as a 20 year old I ended up coming out of Take That owing £500,000."
The Angels hitmaker bounced back in a big way by becoming one of the biggest selling artists in U.K. chart history and he is now estimated to be worth around $157 million (£105 million). He rejoined his bandmates in 2010 for an album and tour, but is now back working as a solo artist.