By Victor Ochieng
Michael Jordan is a basketball legend known globally for his unrivaled NBA performances during his prime. A thought about the all-time greatest in the NBA can never pass without Jordan in the picture.
Well, he’s used to being on top of lists, with some even referring to him as the “world’s best shoe seller” because of his Nike Jordan brand. But one thing has been elusive, and that’s appearing on the list of the world’s richest people.
Although there was already a lot of speculation that the former Chicago Bulls great was already a billionaire, his name hadn’t been officially inducted onto the list of the world’s richest people. That has finally come to pass after Forbes named him among the world’s billionaires.
MJ, as he’s widely nicknamed, is now the 513th person listed as the richest in the U.S. His new status puts him at 1741st globally, reports reveal.
The NBA legend owns the Charlotte Hornets, whose value has recently gone up after Steve Ballmer, former Microsoft Corp. CEO, acquired the Los Angeles Clippers for a whopping $2 billion. The value of Jordan’s stake in the Hornets is now $500 million after the team’s value jumped from the previous $410 million to $725 million last year, according to Forbes reports.
His other source of income is his Nike deal. It’s been approximated that he pockets close to $100 million a year from the deal. CNN Money revealed that in 2013, the Jordans brand raked in a cool $2.25 billion for Nike, earning the player $90 million.
Jordan still remains among the most respected basketball figures. The 52-year-old is arguably the world’s greatest basketball player of all time and is a brand that the corporate world values.
Also joining the billionaire list are another 290 people drawn from across the globe. Out of all the new names making it to the list, Jordan is the most notable of all, simply because of his basketball legacy and now, his immense marketing skills. He’s also the best paid basketball player of all time.
Of the 290 newcomers, China produced the highest amount of billionaires with 71, followed by the U.S. with 57, and India with 28. The rest were shared among other countries. Every continent produced its fair share of new billionaires, except Antarctica.
The world’s richest person is still Bill Gates, whose total net worth was approximated at $79 billion. Others in the top 5 are Carlos Slim, Warren Buffett, Amancio Ortega, and Larry Ellison.