LeBron James Is Now Basketball's Second Billionaire
Basketball legend LeBron James is officially a billionaire, according to Forbes.
He’s only the second billionaire to come from the basketball court after Michael Jordan claimed the billionaire status in 2014. However, Jordan became a billionaire 10 years after retirement, making LeBron James the only basketball player to become a billionaire while still an active player in the NBA.
At only 37 years old, the athlete has been one of the top players in the NBA for almost 20 years. From his NBA salaries alone, LeBron has earned over $385 million from playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, and Los Angeles Lakers. Forbes also estimates that the athlete has signed $900 million worth of endorsement deals and business ventures.
LeBron’s business ventures include a minority stake worth $30 million in Blake Pizza chain; a minority stake worth $90 million in Fenway Sports Group, which owns Liverpool F.C., Boston Red Sox, Fenway Park, and more; and a majority stake worth $300 million in The Spring Hill Company, the umbrella company of James’ Robot Robot Company marketing agency, Uninterrupted athlete platform, and SpringHill Entertainment, which produced Space Jam: A New Legacy.
LeBron also has equity in Tonal, Lyft, Beats by Dre, Ladder, Beachbody, and more. That’s not even counting his rumored billion-dollar lifetime deal with Nike. In real estate, LeBron owns three mansion properties worth $80 million in total.
But LeBron is nowhere near done. James is still an active member of the NBA and could possibly snatch up a $97 million contract extension with the Lakers. At 37, LeBron is still years away from retirement, after which, he will no doubt double down on his business ventures, following in the footsteps of the late basketball legend and venture capitalist Kobe Bryant.
Although he’s best known for playing on the court, being a businessman has always been a priority for LeBron. In fact, he might have just manifested his billionaire status years ago. When asked about his businesses by GQ in 2014, here’s what LeBron James had to say.
"It’s my biggest milestone. Obviously. I want to maximize my business. And if I happen to get it, if I happen to be a billion-dollar athlete, ho. Hip hip hooray! Oh, my God, I’m gonna be excited."