Tribute: Kobe Bryant Net Worth Before His Death

Kobe Bryant Net Worth, Career Earnings & Vanessa Bryant Net Worth
Photo: Keith Allison/Wikimedia

What was Kobe Bryant’s net worth when he died? Read on to find out the fortune he left behind, including his career earnings and investments.

Kobe Bryant was a professional Basketball player who played in the NBA’s with the Los Angeles Lakers for 20 seasons. Famous for his numerous achievements, Bryant was one of the top NBA stars whose rise to success and dominance in the NBA told a story about determination, grit, and rebound. 

In his 20 seasons in the league, he led the Lakers to NBA Championship glory on five occasions, clinching the NBA Finals MVP on two occasions. Bryant missed out on the NBA All-star game only on two occasions throughout his career. 

After he departed from the NBA, he still proved to be an influential figure in the league. Bryant also successfully established a business empire, which was rapidly expanding before his untimely demise. 

In this tribute article to one of the Greatest Basketball Players of All-time, we will review the fortune left behind by Kobe Bryant — a loving husband, a model father, an excellent basketball player, and an ingenious businessman.

Kobe Bryant’s Net Worth Before his Tragic Death

Before his untimely death, Kobe Bryant’s net worth was a massive fortune valued at $600 million. Bryant, who retired from the NBA in 2016, earned a considerable fortune in his 20-season long career in the NBA from salaries and Endorsement deals. The value of his earnings during his glamorous basketball career was so much that at the time he called it quits on basketball, it ranked as the highest for a team athlete

Only three athletes, all from individual sports, namely, esteemed golfer Tiger Woods, undefeated boxer Floyd Mayweather and legendary Formula 1 star Michael Schumacher, earned more than he ever made in his career, as at the time he retired. 

He leveraged his solid financial state to increase further his wealth, which rose to $600 million in 2020. From movie production, book authorship, and sports drinks to video games, Kobe Bryant was unstoppable, setting shop in almost every industry. Thanks to his fame, publicity to the brands he established came naturally, which led to increased sales.

Kobe Bryant’s Career Earnings

Kobe Bryant began his career in 1996 after he was selected as the top pick of the 1996 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Lakers, who signed him on a three-star long contract worth $3.5 million. By the time he retired from the NBA about 20 years later, Bryant has earned a whopping $680 million from the combination of salaries and endorsements. 

From the early years of his career, Bryant had known that he’d attain so much fame in the league, which will see him earn record sum in salaries. This is evidenced by his vote in the 1999 Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), limiting NBA players’ salaries. Bryant, who had just seven starts to his name and was nothing more than a media-hyped talent, was one of five players who voted against the agreement. 

In his entire career, Bryant earned $328,237,108 in salaries. His salary peaked at $30,453,000 in the 2014 season. As of 2020, only Kevin Garnett has made more money in paychecks than Kobe Bryant ever did in the NBA.

Endorsement deals with multiple brands increased his fortune significantly. Bryant earned $354 million from his various endorsement deals with top brands such as Nike, Mercedes Benz, Hublot, Sony, Nintendo, Sprite, McDonald’s, and several more. His deal with Nike is of particular interest. 

Though he didn’t match Michael Jordan in market reach, Nike boasted being Kobe Bryant’s biggest endorsement partner. He signed a 10-year long deal which raked him $10 million annually. His popularity in China extensively helped Nike sell more Kobe Bryant shoes and helped Bryant secure deals with Asian brands such as Alibaba.

Kobe Bryant’s Investments

After doing what he knows how to do best in the NBA, Kobe Bryant successfully transitioned to become a businessman with a vast financial rewarding business empire which formed the majority of his $600 million fortune. His investment journey dates as far back as the late years of his NBA career. 

In 2013 Kobe Bryant launched Kobe Inc. an investment company. Kobe Inc.’s first investment was in BodyArmor—a sports drink brand. He acquired 10% of the company’s stakes for about $5 million. That proved to be a smart move in 2018 when Coca-Cola invested $300 million in the company, which shot up its valuation to about $2 billion. Bryant’s stake went up to as much as $200 million. 

After he retired from the NBA, Kobe Bryant, alongside entrepreneur Jeff Stibel, launched a venture capital firm named Bryant-Stibel, which will invest $100 million in gaming, technology, media, data, and other businesses. The firm has assets valued at over $2 billion. They have invested in Alibaba, Epic Games, LegalZoom, and others. 

Kobe Bryant also founded Granity Studios, a production company that produced the 2017 movie, Dear Basketball. The movie, which was written by Kobe Bryant, won the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film, an Annie Award Best Animated Short Subject, and a Sports Emmy Award. Bryant also authored several books, including his 2018 book The Mamba Mentality: How I Play.

Kobe Bryant’s Charity & Philanthropy

Kobe Bryant was an ambassador for the non-profit organization After-School All-Stars (ASAS), which organizes after-school programs in 13 cities in the US. 

Alongside the Chinese government-backed Soong Ching Ling Foundation, Kobe Bryant, through his Kobe Bryant China Fund, raised funds for healthcare and education in China. 

In 2010 at the Call of Duty: Black Ops launch, Kobe Bryant presented a check of $1 million to non-profit organization Call of Duty Endowment, which helps military veterans transition to civilian life. 

Kobe Bryant also founded the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation (KVBFF), through which he assists the homeless and provides skills for young people through sports. He also granted about 200 requests made through the Make-A-Wish Foundation. 

Bryant has also supported other charity organizations such as drop-in youth center for the homeless, My Friend’s Place, Step up on Second, and the United Way of Greater Los Angeles.

Vanessa Bryant’s Net Worth after Kobe Bryant’s Death

With the absence of a prenuptial agreement, Kobe Bryant’s widow, Vanessa Bryant’s net worth is valued at about $600 million, as of 2020. The couple agreed not to sign a prenuptial agreement due to Kobe Bryant’s love for her. 

Their marriage had been rocky, and at a certain point, they had considered getting a divorce but later called it off. Vanessa Bryant’s $600 million net worth is the product of her inheriting her late husband’s financial empire.


The world will never forget Kobe!

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