Widely known as the greatest basketball player of all time, Michael Jordan has a lucrative business career with a net worth of $2 billion.
- Michael Jordan is the wealthiest former professional athlete in the world, with a net worth of $2 billion, according to Forbes.
- He makes millions yearly from his Nike Air Jordan shoe line, to which he gets a reported 5% of all earnings.
- In 2022 alone, Jordan got an estimated $256.1 million payout for the sales of his shoes, according to Front Office Sports.
- He also owns the Charlotte Hornets, a car dealership, five restaurants, and is an owner of the tequila brand Cincoro.
- He recently donated $10 million to Make-A-Wish Foundation, making the largest individual contribution in the charity’s history.
Why it’s news
Air, a new film directed by Ben Affleck and starring Matt Damon, tells the story of a Nike shoe salesman who helped launch Air Jordan—a shoe that leveraged Michael Jordan’s on-court stardom to make the fledgling sneaker company a leader in sports apparel.
Before modern-day professional sports, athletes worked part-time jobs during the off-season to generate more income. Today, even bench-warming athletes earn high six-figure salaries, and the stars attract multimillion-dollar deals and endorsements—making professional athletes often top the world’s richest.
Creating wealth, and holding onto it, as an athlete means more than winning on the court, it means establishing revenue outside of the sport.
Michael Jordan is often considered the greatest basketball player of all time, but his impact reaches far beyond the court. He is well-respected for his philanthropic efforts and transformed his basketball wealth and fame into a multimillion-dollar entrepreneurial career.
Jordan retired from the National Basketball Association 20 years ago, but is still the highest-paid athlete of all time—followed by golf superstar Tiger Woods.
Jordan earned $90 million in salary during his NBA career and $1.8 billion in pre-tax money from endorsements like Nike and Gatorade. It is estimated that Jordan brought home $256.1 million last year with his Air Jordan shoe line.
Jordan has many sources of income, including his numerous business investments that ultimately led him to billionaire status.
Apart from his significant investments in Air Jordan and the Charlotte Hornets, he is also invested in Sportradar, a Switzerland-based sports data provider, headphone brand Muzik, Gigster, a San Francisco-based marketplace for freelance tech talent, and aXiomatic, amongst others, according to Sportskeeda.
Amongst all of his companies and investments, it is reported that Jordan makes around $145 million annually. He also spends a significant amount of money annually.
He owns a private jet painted Carolina blue with the ID number containing his famous jersey number “23” and the number of titles he won, “6”. He also owns a list of luxury cars, an $80-million yacht, a personal golf course in Florida, and multiple properties.
He spent nearly $12.8 million building his dream house in Florida in 2012 and has a $2.8 million home near Charlotte.
Though he spends a significant amount of money, he is also known for his philanthropic efforts. To honor his 60th birthday in February, he donated $10 million to Make-A-Wish Foundation.
“For the past 34 years, it’s been an honor to partner with Make-A-Wish and help bring a smile and happiness to so many kids. Witnessing their strength and resilience during such a tough time in their lives has truly been an inspiration.I can’t think of a better birthday gift than seeing others join me in supporting Make-A-Wish so that every child can experience the magic of having their wish come true,” he states.
The $10 million donation was the most significant amount ever given to Make-A-Wish Foundation, and Jordan had already donated $5 million to the organization before his most recent gift.
In 2020, he committed $50 million to organizations dedicated to pursuing racial equality.