Michael Jordan earned $90m in 2013, more than nearly any active athlete

According to Forbes magazine, retired basketball legend Michael Jordan made more money in 2013 than any other retired athlete in the world, earning an estimated $90million, more than any active playing athlete aside from boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. who made over $100m.

And where did all the money come from someone who hasn't played basketball in almost 10 years? Air Jordan of course!

Air Jordan is a brand of shoes and athletic clothing designed, owned, and produced by Michael Jordan for Nike's Jordan Brand subsidiary.
Nike released the Air Jordan 10 “Powder Blue” retro sneaker on Saturday, 20 years after the first Jordan 10s hit shelves. Like all the Jordan retro releases, this one was highly anticipated and first-day sales hit $35 million. 

Retail shoe sales for the Jordan Brand in the U.S. grew 11% last year to $2.7 billion, with basketball making up 84% of that, according to Powell. Roughly 50% to 55% of that goes to Nike. If you factor in sales of Jordan apparel, the international Jordan business and sales at Nike stores, the Jordan brand is contributing roughly $2 billion of revenue to Nike, which posted sales of $26 billion over the last 12 months. Jordan, the man, gets a cut of every shoe, hoodie or pair of shorts sold by Nike under the Jordan Brand.

We estimate MJ’s take from Nike was at least $75 million last year. “Given that he is the name that launched the brand, you could argue that he deserves more,” says Phil de Picciotto, founder and president of Octagon. “Jordan is the perfect athlete.

For perspective, in all of 2013, Adidas sold $40 million in the U.S. of the signature shoes of its top star, Derrick Rose. The Bulls’ current star guard isn’t the only one operating in the shadow of Jordan. Reigning MVP LeBron James is the top seller among current NBA players with $300 million at retail last year for his Nike shoes, according to data tracker SportsOneSource. Jordan crushed those numbers with $2.25 billion in U.S. retail basketball sales in 2013. 

It has been more than a decade since Michael Jordan last appeared in an NBA uniform, but MJ most certainly has still got it.


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