LeBron James has a lot of titles under his belt: MVP, Rookie of the Year G.O.A.T. (arguably), All-Star and many more. A few of those could be applied to other NBA stars who have also won plenty of accolades, but he does have one that most athletes don't: billionaire.
The NBA star has spent 20 seasons atop the NBA as arguably its best player through that entire stretch. That alone would result in a lot of money as James has had quite a few lucrative contracts as a result.
LeBron James' official net worth is $1 billion. He hit this mark in June of 2022, per Forbes' estimation. The Los Angeles Lakers star hit a financial milestone only achieved by two other athletes: Tiger Woods and Michael Jordan.
That $1 billion number will continue to grow, especially after James retires and transitions to Hollywood, sports analysis, ownership or anything else he decides to pursue. Here's how he got to that mark, though.
How LeBron James' net worth reached $1 billion
As he continued to get better and more money was available in sports, his contracts got bigger and bigger. His first contract with the Miami Heat gave him $14.5 million. When he rejoined the Cavaliers, it was for $20.6 million.
Signing with the Lakers proved to be an excellent financial decision, as his most recent contract year (2022-2023) earned almost $44.5 million. All totaled, James has earned about $431.9 million over 20 seasons.
LeBron James' endorsements
That is only a fraction of his net worth, though. Being the most profitable face in basketball (and perhaps the entire sports world) has its perks. James has been endorsed by or a sponsor for a lot of brands over the years.
These include but are not limited to Coca-Cola, 2K Sports, Tonal, Ruffles, AT&T, Beats Electronics, KIA Motors, Nike, Walmart, RIMOWA, Mountain Dew, GMC and Wheaties.
Nike has been a huge contributor to LeBron James' staggering net worth. Just from his 2016 contract with the company for a shoe deal, the NBA's leading scorer will earn another $1 billion over his lifetime.
James also became the face of Ruffles, which is one of the biggest potato chip brands in the world. They're the official chip brand of the NBA, which only helps improve the net worth of the league's biggest star.
AT&T has plenty of star athletes as sponsors. They frequent the commercials, such as LaMelo Ball, Matthew Stafford or Sue Bird. They pale in comparison to the value and recognizability of James, though.
The Lakers' forward has also been a luxury ambassador for Kia Motors since 2014. They are one of the more prominent car brands and even partnered with the athlete to make the LeBron James Stinger GT, a car after his own name.
James signed with Beats in 2008 and earned $1 million per commercial with them. It's rumored that he earned over $500 million after Apple bought the company.
These are just a few of the endorsements that the 20-year NBA veteran has earned, but it's easy to see how he's accumulated a net worth of over $1 billion. Being a star athlete has its financial perks, but endorsements are where a lot of the money truly comes from.
LeBron James in Hollywood: The making of a billionaire
Playing in Los Angeles has its downsides, but it also has a lot of perks. It's right near Hollywood, which is where James has spent some time. Per IMDb, the NBA superstar has been a producer for 52 projects, with six more upcoming.
He's also been an actor, starring in films like Space Jam: A New Legacy, Trainwreck, House Party (2023) and Smallfoot. These movies aren't cheap to make and the stars often get sizable paydays.
He is also credited as a writer for four projects. While he's obviously not known for his movie and television star power, James has clearly had a lot of experience (and a lot of money) in that arena.
It takes a lot to earn $1 billion in any field. Athletes, even those on absurd $500 million deals, have rarely achieved this feat. Most people don't achieve this feat as only about 3,300 people are currently billionaires.
James' on-court stats, highlights and more are impressive, but what he's done off of it is equally as impressive.
Becoming the NBA's leading scorer is incredibly challenging, but so is becoming only the second billionaire in NBA history- and the first to ever become one while still playing. Even Michael Jordan, who ascended to billionaire status in 2016, didn't do that.