By the time Foreman retired for the second time in 1997, his little sideline had developed into a hugely successful business, with Foreman making as much as $8 million (£6.2m) a month in profits. Two years later, he sold the naming right of his grill firm to Salter for $138 million (£105m). All in all, the ex-champ has earned $200 million (£153m) for the endorsement, eclipsing the prize money he won during his boxing career and then some. Foreman’s net worth is currently thought to sit around the $300 million (£233m) mark.
Twins Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen found fame in the 1990s starring in the TV sitcom Full House, and the enterprising siblings set up a production company in 1993 called Dualstar, significantly boosting their income. But the big bucks really flowed when they quit acting and moved into fashion – a move which has seen their net worth soar to an estimated $300 million (£229m).
Capitalising on their style know-how and huge fanbase, the duo partnered with Walmart before establishing their very own high-end fashion label called The Row in 2006, which is reported to generate between $100 million and $200 million (£774k-£1.4m) in sales each year. The label has also spawned several other best-selling lines, including Elizabeth and James and Olsenboye, with the former having a value of around $89 million (£69.2m). Ridiculously successful, the Olsens’ net worth is currently around $400 million (£311m).
An inspiring rags-to-riches story, Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson kicked off his career in 1996 with just $7 to his name, but by the time he'd retired from full-time wrestling in 2004, the WWF superstar had made a pile of money. The real riches though have come since 2004, mainly thanks to the Rock's flourishing Hollywood movie career. Successful films such as the Fast and the Furious franchise and more recently Moana and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, have all raked in the cash for The Rock.
In fact, according to Forbes, the muscle-bound leading man earned a staggering $87.5 million (£68m) in 2019, making him the highest-paid actor on the planet. The Rock has held the title for several years now and can command more than $20 million (£15.6m) per movie. While the film industry has been put on hold for a lot of 2020, Johnson’s next movie Red Notice is due to be released on Netflix in November, six months later than scheduled. As if his finances needed an additional boost, The Rock also has a line of clothing with Under Armour, the compensation for which is believed to be around $15 million (£11.7m) each year.
Professional skateboarder Tony Hawk retired from competition in 1999 and hasn't looked back, at least from a financial point of view. The first skater to perform a documented 900-degree trick, Hawk has made a heap of cash from his post-retirement ventures, while also shining the spotlight on skateboarding.
A marketing genius, Hawk has put his name to everything from amusement park rides to toys and video games. His Tony Hawk video game series, which spawned 19 titles between 1999 and 2015, as well as occasional TV appearances, has made the former pro-skater millions: a net worth rumoured to be around $100 million (£778m) to be precise. Hawk’s fortune is only set to rise as remakes of his iconic games were released at the beginning of September, looking to get a whole new generation of skaters and gamers hooked.
Banks' net worth surged post-retirement on the back of a super-successful TV career producing and fronting America's Next Top Model, which has run since 2003, and the Emmy Award-winning Tyra Banks Show, the talk show she created in 2005, which ran for five seasons. By then, the supermodel was earning $6 million (£4.6m) a year. By 2009, she was pulling in a cool $30 million (£22.9m) and she released a best-selling novel in 2010. Banks’ most recent venture is as host of the US version of Dancing With The Stars, and while her salary is yet to be revealed, one of her predecessors Tom Bergeron was thought to be earning a cool $150,000 (£116k) per episode. Banks’ net worth is now rumoured to be around $90 million (£70m).
Basketball icon Michael Jordan played an impressive 15 seasons in the NBA for the Chicago Bulls and Washington Wizards from 1984 up until his third retirement in 2003. The eighth richest on Forbes’ 2019 Black Billionaires list, Jordan has earned an absolute fortune post-retirement. His net worth currently stands at $1.6 billion (£1.2bn).
One of the most marketed sportspeople in history, the basketball legend has made the bulk of his cash from endorsements, which include the Air Jordan sneaker range for Nike and lucrative contracts with brands including Gatorade, Coca-Cola and McDonald's. Not to mention his film and TV career. Jordan's ownership of the Charlotte Hornets has also boosted his post-retirement income, as will his recent formation of a Nascar team in partnership with Denny Hamlin and Bubba Wallace.
The former pop star released her debut album in 1999 and scored several top 20 hits in the US before starring with her then-husband Nick Lachey in popular MTV reality show Newlyweds: Nick and Jessica, which ran from 2003 to 2005, as well as the 2005 Dukes of Hazzard movie. However, the money really came rolling in when she expanded her business horizons.
A creative businesswoman, Simpson has made millions from fashion since her music and movie career waned in the mid-2000s. Her eponymous clothing line, which she founded in 2005, was making $1 billion (£773) in annual sales when Simpson sold her majority stake in the company in 2016. Simpson’s recent big hit is her New York Times Bestseller Open Book, which sold almost half a million copies in its first three months. Simpson's net worth was estimated at $170 million (£132m) in 2016 but is likely to be considerably more today.
Nicklaus has banked millions since his retirement. In 2013, for instance, he earned $30 million (£23m), more money than he ever took home during his long career. Nicklaus has made most of his cash from commentating gigs, book deals and his hugely successful golf course design firm, which has developed over 425 courses in more than 45 countries. Although Nicklaus is living a slower-paced life these days, thanks to his legend status and investments he has made around $1.15 billion (£894m) over the course of his various career paths.
David Beckham played for top soccer clubs including Manchester United and Real Madrid during his illustrious 20-year career and amassed millions in earnings and endorsements. What followed next were cameos in films, perfume and aftershave endorsements as well as lucrative clothing line deals with Adidas, H&M and Calvin Klein. He has also been the face of Pepsi and endorsed whisky brand Haig and famous watch company Tudor, all reportedly earning him over $45 million (£34m) between 2013 and 2016.
Despite his retirement Beckham can still be spotted on the pitch, but these days he’s focusing on his soccer team in the US, Inter Miami, which played its first ever league game at the beginning of this year. It continues to be his business acumen that brings in the cash. The footballer earned $38 million (£29m) from his company DB Ventures between 2016 and 2018, and continues to profit through other enterprises, such as Guild Esports, which recently raised £20 million ($26m) at its IPO and in which Beckham is a minor investor. It is rumoured that the retired footballer has an overall net worth of $450 million (£348m).
Kathy Ireland was a supermodel during the 1980s and early 1990s, walking in top shows and gracing the cover of Sports Illustrated magazine three times. The runway and cover star made a decent living from her modelling gigs but really started bringing home the bacon when she founded her brand marketing company kathy ireland Worldwide (kiWW) in 1993.
Ireland was coached by close friend Warren Buffett and the investment guru's business advice has certainly paid off. Now the world's richest former model, Ireland is worth $500 million (£389m). Her business, which markets everything from clothing to homeware, has generated billions of dollars, and is continuing to expand today – the company’s most recent partnership is with premium Italian sofa specialists Di Giò.
Why? This was part of a deal made when the Mets released Bonilla before the 2000 season while still owing him $5.9 million (£4.5m) for the final year of his contract. Instead of paying up outright, the team agreed to pay it over 25 annual instalments, with 8% interest. The deal expires in 2035, at which point Bonilla will have been paid $29.8 million (£23.2m), far more than he would have got for a season if he had been able to play.
An already-established author before becoming president, sales of his books increased after he left office. Meanwhile, wife Michelle Obama’s book Becoming, which was the number one best-selling book in 2018, has also helped keep the family finances up, and it looks set to become the best-selling autobiography of all time. Together Barack and Michelle Obama are thought to be worth more than $40 million (£31.1m).
As well as deals with Pepsi and Nestlé, O’Neal’s business career has also taken off. In 2016, he purchased a Krispy Kreme franchise location in Atlanta and is also a global spokesperson for the company. In 2019, O’Neal joined the board of directors at Papa John's and invested in nine stores in the same state. He also has his own pizza with the chain – the Shaq-a-Roni – with some of its profits going to charity. His net worth is estimated at $400 million (£305m), according to Forbes.
One of the first shocks of 2020 was Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s decision to step down from royal duties in favour of a more independent life. Before that, the Duke of Sussex was receiving around £2.5 million ($3.3m) each year from his father, the Prince of Wales, and had earned between $50,000 and $53,000 (£39k-£41k) annually during his time as a helicopter pilot for the Army Air Corps, according to Forbes. While Prince Harry no longer receives his hefty Sovereign Grant, he and his wife aren't likely to be going broke any time soon...
Now officially allowed to work outside the Royal sphere, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have the world at their feet – and unlimited earning potential. In September, the couple signed a multi-year deal with Netflix to create TV series, films, and children’s shows with the streaming giant. The deal is thought to be worth somewhere between $100 million and $150 million (£77m-£116m), which is quite the hike in earnings for the pair. And it isn’t their only source of income – brought up in the limelight, Harry has a knack for public speaking, and in February was invited by JP Morgan to deliver a speech. The prince accepted and is thought to have been paid $1 million (£773k) for the engagement.
Now take a look at the celebrity investors who've made, and lost, the most money