Michael Jordan: successful in and out of the court

Everybody knows or has heard of Michael Jordan, the basketball star of the 90s and a sport icon for any athlete or fan in the world. The amazing thing about Jordan has been his success in and out of the basketball court. As a player, he won almost everything that a basketball player can win; as a businessman and brand name, he has reached levels never thought of with his endorsements and brand. Jordan´s stories and achievements are too many to try to summarize them in a few paragraphs, but there are some highlights of his career and business life that are very interesting and important to know and maybe try to imitate. From being denied into a basketball team in high school to making millions with his name, here are some of those special moments.

Michael Jordan was born in 1963 in February 17 in Brooklyn, New York. He was the fourth son of  James R. Jordan  and Delores Jordan. They moved to Washington and Michael attended the Emsley A. Laney High School in Wilmington. In 1981 He earned a basketball scholarship to the University of North Carolina majoring in cultural geography and in 1984 he Won the Naismith and the Wooden College Player of the Year award and  left the University of North Carolina one year before his scheduled graduation and entered the 1984 NBA Draft, but returned to complete his degree in 1986.

He was chosen by the Chicago Bulls in 1984 and a very prominent career started including Six-time NBA champion (1991-93, 1996-98); NBA MVP (1988, ’91, ’92, ’96, ’98); 10-time All-NBA First Team (1987-93, 1996-98); All-NBA Second Team (1985); Defensive Player of the Year (1988); Nine-time All-Defensive First Team (1988-93, 1996-98); Rookie of the Year (1985); 14-time All-Star; All-Star MVP (1988, ’96, ’98); One of 50 Greatest Players in NBA History (1996); Two-time Olympic gold medalist (1984, ’92).

Michael Jordan retired from basketball 3 times. The first in 1993 after his father was murdered; His second retirement was in 1998 at the end of his contract and his third was in 2003 after playing with the Washington Wizards.

Apart from his sports career, Michael Jordan is a very successful businessman who began understanding the money in sport from an early age,  when at the age of 21 he signed a five year contract with NIKE for 2.5 million dollars. Nike and Jordan created the brand Air Jordan for basketball shoes and then the brand became a worldwide sensation.  The brand was so successful that Jordan had to pay 5.000 dollars in fines when the NBA Commissioner outlawed the red-and-black Air Jordan’s.  The second generations of Jordan shoes came at a price of 100 dollars and people lined up to buy them. The Air Jordan business, which includes shoes and other merchandise, was so profitable that Nike decided make the brand a business of its own. That business brings in roughly $1 billion annually. Only in 2013, Jordan made an amazing $90 million from his relationship with the brand.

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Image courtesy of simplistic.designs at Flickr.com

By 1993 Michael Jordan had won 2 MVP and had won three straight championships and could now charge 30 million dollars to play in the NBA. He was now a very marketable athlete having endorsements by major American brands including Coca-Cola Co. (KO), Chevrolet (GM), Gatorade (PEP), McDonald’s (MCD), Ball Park Franks (TSN), Rayovac (SPB), Wheaties (GIS), Hanes (HBI), and then-telecom giant MCI.

Michael Jordan retired for the last time in 2003 when he was playing for the Wizards. Now, out of basketball Jordan started to focus more on his businesses and brand. He dedicated himself to managing the Air Jordan brand that he had with Nike and the Michael Jordan motor sports, which was a motorcycle racing team. Jordan participated in many business ideas and continued with his endorsements. In 2006 he acquired a stake in the Charlotte Bobcats basketball franchise. With this deal, he became the second largest shareholder, and gave him the title of “Managing Member of Basketball Operations.” After four years in the team,  Jordan bought out the majority shareholder of the Bobcats and changed the name to the  Charlotte Hornets in 2014  and became the first former NBA player to become the majority owner of an NBA franchise.

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Image courtesy of Public.Resource.Org at Flickr.com

Michael Jordan was a money making machine since the age of 21. Apart from all his success in basketball as one of the best athletes and redefining what it meant to be a NBA most valuable player, Michael Jordan has been at the top of his game after retirement. He played his last game  13 years ago and still has money coming in from endorsements, Forbes named him the 20th most powerful celebrity and he has made a good quantity of money with the purchase of the Hornets in 2010.