NBA great Michael Jordan has joined an exclusive club after successfully completing his sale of the Charlotte Hornets.
Jordan, widely considered the greatest basketball player of all time, brought an end to his 13-year reign as Hornets owner by offloading his majority stake in the franchise to a group led by Rick Schnall and Gabe Plotkin back in August.
The sale to Schnall and Plotkin was said to be worth a staggering $3billion, marking a colossal profit for the 60-year-old given he forked out $275million to purchase the team back in 2010.
And after cashing in on his majority stake in Charlotte, Jordan has entered Forbes’ 400 list – consisting of the wealthiest Americans with in the US.
His net worth is now understood to have surpassed the $3bn mark, meaning he has become the first ever athlete to be included in Forbes’ exclusive club.
Michael Jordan has joined an exclusive club after completing his sale of the Charlotte Hornets
The NBA legend is in Forbes’ 400 list after his net worth hit the $3billion mark – making him the first ever athlete to be includedJordan remains the wealthiest sportsperson in history after combining his iconic career in the NBA with some of the biggest commercial deals ever off the court.
The most famous of those brand partnerships is of course with Nike, who still generate millions of dollars through his iconic Jordan Brand.
The former Chicago Bulls superstar’s most recent yearly royalty check with Nike was reportedly worth around $260m. He collects a reported five per cent of all revenue on his famous Air Jordan sneakers, which were first released back in 1984.
In its latest annual report, Nike recorded $6.6bn in annual wholesale revenue through the Jordan Brand, which was up 28.6 per cent from the previous year.
Jordan, who amassed $94m on the court across his 15 seasons in the NBA, also has lucrative deals in place with the likes of McDonald’s, Gatorade and Hanes.
However, it was his astonishing sale of the Hornets for nearly 17 times its initial value that has placed him amongst the most wealthy individuals in the States.
He is one of only three athletes in history to become a billionaire along with fellow basketball superstar LeBron James and golf legend Tiger Woods, although the latter pair have done so while their careers are still active.
Jordan is the richest sportsperson in history, largely thanks to his iconic partnership with Nike
After waving goodbye to the Hornets in August, Jordan insisted his love for basketball remains as solid as ever.
‘Now is the right time for me to hand over the reins and focus on my family, my personal interests and some new challenges,’ he said. ‘I’m excited to see what the future holds, and I look forward to supporting the team and the community in my new role for many years to come.
‘This is a Thank You, not a goodbye, because the state of North Carolina, the city of Charlotte and the Hornets will always have a special place in my heart.’