LeBron James is officially a billionaire
“In the next 15 or 20 years, I hope to be the richest person in the world,” LeBron James speak for Tim Withers of the Associated Press in 2005. “That’s one of my goals. I want to be a billionaire. I want to reach a position where this generation doesn’t have to worry about anything. I don’t want my family members from my baby to my son to never have to worry. And I can’t do that now just play basketball.”
This was shortly before James’ 21st birthday. He recently fired his agent, Aaron Goodwin, and his career is in the hands of his friends Maverick Carter, Rich Paul and Randy Mims. The 37-year-old isn’t currently the richest man in the world 17 years after that announcement, but he’s done what Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, no one else has done in the NBA – become a billionaire while one play is active.
James crossed that threshold this year, according to Forbes. He took the Air Jordan business model and applied it to all of his endorsements. James wants real ownership of everything that bears his name. So instead of a big fast food deal, he started Blaze Pizza. Instead of just acting in films or investing in their production, an arm of his SpringHill Company, SpringHill Entertainment, produced Space Jam 2 and the documentary Muhammed Ali, What’s my name.
After the business success of Jordan and Johnson, it was only a matter of time before someone came along and was ready to do something else from day one. Johnson has always had a taste for business, but that part of his life reaped the bulk of the fruit after he finished playing. Jordan was a college boy in 1984 who, like many people, loved Adidas. Nike had to laugh at Jordan with a lifetime contract, $ 500,000 / year for 5 years and stock options. James received $90 million from Nike in 2003, and since then he has kept an eye on more.
With the NBA being the global sport that markets its stars and a league that’s been yearning for its true face since Jordan retired for the second time, James appeared at the perfect time. Just like sites like Rivals’ charts players are about to start becoming as important as Sports Illustrated cover stories. His name will be everywhere in a completely different way, and he will control it as much as possible. Because one thing is clear from first his Akron St. Mary St. Vincent Fighting Irish broadcasts on ESPN, he’s the real deal.
That’s why Fortune wrote stories about him in 2007, where Carter and James hosted important conference after the Cleveland Cavaliers were wiped out by the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA Finals. Fortune 500 companies took notes from Carter about how best to market James, especially with the Olympics in Beijing next year. Mike Krzyzewski, USA Men’s, but also Duke University coach at the time, raised a toast over dinner in which he said, “For the next two days, the focus needs to be on LeBron, not on LeBron. your personal companies.”
James and his team learned from the best moneymaker – Warren Buffet – years ago. and New York boutique investment firm Allen & Co. He now does business with Fenway Sports Group and has Elisabeth Murdoch (daughter of Fox News founder Rupert Murdoch) invest in SpringHill – his finances should be fine no matter how that succession plan plays out. .
Whether we need billionaires on this planet or not is another discussion entirely. Should such a few people have so much control over the world’s finances? It’s a solid question that many cable news programs may have some while they sell it to advertisers.
What James and his associates/friends have accomplished is incredibly impressive. Professional athletes competing in the three major US sports leagues are generally well off. The stars line up millions of the same plates in the cupboard, but like Chris Rock said years ago, Shaq may be rich, but the man who signs his check is rich.
Today, James is quite a bit richer than his family, more specifically the woman, his Los Angeles Lakers check-signer, Jeanie Buss – has an estimated value. 500 million dollars. He climbed from the de-industrialized poverty of the Midwest in the 1980s, and took his gifts of immense size and athleticism and molded them into a power the NBA had never seen. . Four NBA championships and MVP later, a healthy 2022-23 season will see him claim Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time scoring title.
Regardless of how you might feel about James, he took his talent and potential and made sure every last drop was turned out, but that the drops would go into his bucket and not. Right drops belong to the corporation. James finds he can play both on-court and off-court games for himself and his loved ones at an age when people’s most researched investment in 2005 was a fake ID, he said. He played the game to keep going and while it wasn’t over, he won it all.