Tiger Woods achieves new status — billionaire

According to Forbes, the 15-time major champion's net worth is now estimated to be at least $1 billion, joining LeBron James and Michael Jordan in the 10-digit club among athletes

Tiger Woods — 2015 US Open
Tiger Woods has reason to smile as he recently became just the third athlete, according to Forbes, to exceed $1 billion in career earnings.

How good is Tiger Woods? Over the past 12 months, despite dropping in the Official World Golf Ranking from 566 at the end of 2021 to 881 and playing just two official events, Woods still managed to earn $68 million in off-course income, according to Forbes.

And that total not only made him the 14th-highest-paid athlete in the world for 2022, but was enough to make him a billionaire — just the third athlete, along with LeBron James and Michael Jordan, to reach the 10-digit plateau. Since turning professional in 1996, Woods' career earnings on and off the course are estimated at $1.7 billion.

Earlier this week, the Washington Post reported in a story about Greg Norman and LIV Golf that Woods reportedly turned down an offer from the Saudi Arabia-backed tour that Norman said would have been "high nine digits."

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The list of brands Woods endorses are Gatorade, Monster Energy, TaylorMade, Rolex and Nike. He signed with Nike in 1996 and Rolex a year later. According to Forbes, less than 10% of Woods career earnings and net worth come from his on-course results.

"He hit the right time in the right sport, being an athlete with a diverse background who was approachable," Joe Favorito, a sports business consultant and Columbia lecturer, told Forbes. "Brands love knowing they’re getting someone who is embraced not just by the traditional but also by the casual fans."

From 2003 through 2012, Woods was not only golf's most dominant player — winning six of his 15 major championships — but he sat atop Forbes' highest-paid athletes list.

In addition to his endorsement deals, Woods has become more diverse as a businessman. He is involved with a golf course design company (TGR Design), a live events production company (TGR Live) and TGR Ventures is involved with a golf technology training aid, hospitality software and a line of mini-golf locations. He's been identified as an investor in a SPAC and a group of clubs and resorts.