Michael Jordan is the kind of man who needs no introduction. As the greatest basketball player of all time and one of the few professional athletes to have the title of “billionaire,” you’d be hard-pressed to find a soul in America who isn’t familiar with His Airness. But what exactly is Michael Jordan’s net worth?
Jordan has been involved in so many endorsements and business ventures that it’s hard to even touch upon them all. A driven man who has given back a portion of his wealth and time to those in need, there’s a reason that MJ is an icon for the ages.
So exactly how much money does Michael Jordan have, and where did it all come from?
Let’s take a look at Jordan’s career, investments, philanthropy, and more.
Michael Jordan’s Net Worth
According to Forbes, Michael Jordan’s net worth is estimated to be about $1.6 billion as of May 2021. That number is surprisingly $500-million below the $2.1 billion Forbes estimated MJ to be worth in 2020. He has earned this incredible sum of money through a variety of avenues. They include his Jordan Brand, endorsement deals, profitable investment ventures, and, of course, his career as perhaps the best basketball player of all time.
Michael Jordan has become the richest former professional athlete in the world. Though he retired in 2003 having earned a measly $90 million during his basketball career, that hasn’t stopped him from becoming a billionaire.
Michael Jordan’s Career
Jordan began playing basketball at a young age and went to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a basketball scholarship. In 1984, he was drafted by the Chicago Bulls to mark the beginning of his NBA career. Between the years of 1984 and 1993, the Bulls were the only NBA team he played for.
Jordan retired for a brief period of time and had a short stint playing minor league baseball. But he eventually returned to play for the Bulls between 1995 and 1998.
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Michael Jordan retired for a second time between the years of 1999 and 2001. In 2000, though, he returned as a part-owner for the Washington Wizards as well as the president of basketball operations.
Once again, Jordan chose to return to the NBA in 2001. He played with the Washington Wizards until 2003.
On top of his career with the NBA, Jordan also won two gold medals as a part of the US Men’s basketball team at the Olympics in 1984 and 1992.
Michael Jordan’s Earnings From Endorsements
A vast majority of Michael Jordan’s current wealth was earned from endorsements. In a period of about 40 years, Jordan has earned over $1 billion in endorsements from several different brands. These include Nike, Wheaties, McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Chevrolet, and more. To this day, he is still involved with a number of brands including Nike, Gatorade, Upper Deck, and Hanes.
Nike has always been the biggest source of income for Michael Jordan. In 1984, he signed a five-year deal with the sportswear company, earning $500,000 a year in addition to royalties. To be clear, this annual salary alone would be about $1.2 million in today’s currency.
According to Forbes, Michael Jordan made $130 million from his Nike endorsement deal alone in 2020. This is four times more than the second biggest NBA shoe deal, which is the endorsement deal of Lebron James.
Jordan’s very first endorsement deal was with Chevrolet in 1984. This was when he was a rookie and well before he was well known to the entire world.
He appeared on more covers of Wheaties’ cereal boxes than any other athlete. In 1991, he signed a deal with Gatorade. That earned him a cool $13.5 million over the course of ten years.
Michael Jordan’s Investments
Michael Jordan didn’t only know how to make money, but he knew how to make his money work for him. He has invested in a number of tech startups including Gigster. He was also a part of a $305 million investment in a startup known as Dapper Labs.
MJ took majority control of the Charlotte Hornets in 2010. This $175 million deal proved to be a good move indeed, as team values exploded shortly after this. In September 2020, he sold 20% of the team which was valued at the time at $1.5 billion.
Jordan has also put a ton of money into real estate. He owns properties in Chicago, North Carolina, Utah, and Florida. His Chicago home (which was his primary residence until 2007) has been listed on the market since 2012. The current listing price is $14.9-million, but it is believed that the many custom features are making it difficult to sell the property.
Some of those custom features include a custom “23” on the driveway gate, and a full basketball court with a jumpman logo. The house is 32,000 square feet, with 9 bedrooms and a whopping 19 bathrooms.
MJ actually owns not one, but two homes in North Carolina — a villa on Lake Norman that is located on the Peninsula golf course, and a luxury penthouse condo in Charlotte that’s 7,000 square feet. His Utah home is located in Park City is 10,000 square feet and has been listed for $7.5-million since 2019.
And then there’s his $12.8-million mansion in Jupiter, Florida. This is where Jordan spends most of his time these days. And who can blame him? The residence is located in an incredibly high-profile area known as “The Bear Club.” It is 26,299 square feet and includes a cigar room, a basketball gym, a guard house, a guest house, and a pool house.
Jordan purchased the home approximately 10 years ago for $4.8-million, and he added roughly another $7.6-million in renovations — which is chump change when you’re as rich as MJ.
Michael Jordan’s Philanthropy
On top of making a truly remarkable amount of money over his career, Jordan has also made a point to give back. There are a number of charitable organizations to which he has been a major contributor.
The movie “The Last Dance,” a documentary that focused on the last championship run Jordan had with the Bulls will apparently have all proceeds go to charity. One of the charities that will benefit from this film include the Friends of the Children nonprofit.
He also pledged to pay arena workers for missed games, along with most other NBA owners, so that workers wouldn’t suffer lost income during the time of the coronavirus pandemic.
Jordan has additionally paid large amounts of money to help with hurricane relief efforts in the Carolinas and the Bahamas. He’s also spent thirty years involved in the Make-A-Wish foundation as both a grantor and a donor.
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When you follow sports, you’re following an incredible drama that unfolds over time. Full of truly impressive and sometimes wacky characters, incredible feats of athleticism, moments of tragedy, and moments of grace, there is something deeply human about incorporating the world of sports into your life.
Michael Jordan’s net worth is an example of how someone who has talent, passion, and drive can truly climb the ladder to sit on top of the world. When you’ve reached billionaire status, you don’t have to worry about saving pennies for a new pair of Air Jordan’s ever again.
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