Forbes has officially announced that Magic Johnson is now a billionaire. At age 64, this makes him the fourth athlete to earn the billionaire status alongside Michael Jordan, LeBron James and Tiger Woods.
According to the publication, over the course of his NBA career, he made $40 million USD. Though that is the case, most of his wealth does not come from being a professional basketball player. But in fact, it his business acumen that leads him to becoming one of the most successful athletes in the world. His savvy investments in the Los Angeles Lakers, one of the most successful franchises of all time, along with the WNBA's Los Angeles Sparks and MLS team Los Angeles Football Club and Starbucks,movie theaters, restaurant chains like TGI Fridays, are all a part of his diverse portfolio. He is also the co-owner of the Washington Commanders and the Los Angeles Dodgers. As the chairman and CEO of Magic Johnson Enterprises, his net worth has continued to grow since his days in the NBA.
In 1994, Johnson bough a 4.5% stake in the Lakers for $10 million USD, which he sold in 2010 right before the NBA team's values exploded. His stake today would be worth $265 million USD. His early ventures with Sony Pictures to launch Magic Johnson Theaters as well as his ventures with Starbucks in the 90s to open more than 100 locations in Black neighborhoods around the country gave him a $75 million USD profit when he sold the locations back to the company in 2010. With these deals, it gave him the room to continue to grow other parts of his portfolio, like purchasing the Dodgers. Johnson's investment in Simply Healthcare, which was launching a Medicaid plan for people with HIV and AIDS in 2012 saw Johnson buy a 60% stake in EquiTrust Life Insurance when the company sold for $1 billion USD. This remains Johnson's most lucrative investment to date. Since he took over, the company's total assets grew from $16 billion to $26 billion USD and EquiTrust now brings in around $2.6 billion USD in revenue a year.
In other sports news, Lionel Messi wins his eighth Ballon d'Or.