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Michael Jordan's net worth: all about the Bulls legend's billion-dollar empire off the court amid new record

The iconic NBA star has made billions in the twenty years he has spent off the court

Chicago Bulls star Michael Jordan high-fives the crowd during pre-race ceremonies prior to the start of the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 22, 2010 in Concord, North Carolina
Beatriz Colon
Beatriz Colon - New York
Online News WriterNew York
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It has been twenty years since Michael Jordan retired (for the last time) from basketball, but his business empire only keeps growing.

The NBA legend, now 60, first made waves on the court in 1984, when he was 21 and got drafted to the Chicago Bulls, for whom he played for 13 seasons.

Now, combined with the money moves he's making off the court, the basketball G.O.A.T. has made himself a billionaire, and the milestones don't stop there.

WATCH: A Sneak Peek Inside Michael Jordan's Residence

This week, Forbes confirmed that Jordan's net worth officially rose to a whopping $3 billion (from $2 billion), after he sold his majority stake of basketball team the Charlotte Hornets.

With the one billion-dollar increase to his wealth, the athlete entered the coveted Forbes 400 list, at number 379, making him the first-ever professional athlete to do so.

Back in 2014, Jordan became the first ever professional athlete to achieve billionaire status. Since then, only two others have joined the ranks: LeBron James, who has a net worth of one billion dollars, and Tiger Woods, who has a net worth of $1.1 billion.

Michael Jordan of the Chicago Bulls (23) in action, making dunk during All Star Weekend, Seattle, WA 2/8/1987© Getty
Jordan struck a deal with Nike the same year he was drafted to the Bulls

While Jordan was in the NBA, he was one of the highest-paid athletes in the organization, and he is known for having some of the most popular, and money-making, endorsements of all time.

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Among them were deals with Hanes, McDonald's, Wheaties, Chevrolet, and Gatorade, but none compare to the success and cultural phenomenon that has been his deal with Nike, which came during his first year with the Bulls, and when Nike, though already globally recognized, still didn't have the star power (or money) as competitors like Adidas and Converse. 

Detail of the "Air Jordan" Nike shoes worn by Chicago Bulls' center Michael Jordan #23 during a game against the Washington Bullets at Capital Centre circa 1985 in Washington, D.C.© Getty
The legend's partnership with Nike made him a billionaire

What was once a five-year, $2.5 million deal with Nike – which gave the world the iconic Air Jordan shoe – is now a line that brings Nike up to $5 billion in revenue a year, and of that, Jordan receives 5%.

MORE: Michael Jordan's unexpected gesture at $10million wedding to wife Yvette

AIR | Official Trailer

The story of how the first of its kind, billion-dollar partnership came to be was most recently told in the Ben Affleck-directed movie Air, in which he starred as Nike co-founder Phil Knight, alongside his best friend and producing partner Matt Damon, who portrayed sports marketing executive Sonny Vaccaro.

The movie depicts the process of Nike convincing Jordan to sign with them, though he doesn't have a starring role (in fact audiences never see his face) and instead the film highlights his mom Deloris Jordan (played by Viola Davis) and her role in the decision to sign with Nike.

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