Michael Jackson was by far one of the richest entertainers in life, as he is in death. Rumors have been swirling for the last couple weeks concerning just how much the numbers add up to. Billboard has confirmed that after all the numbers are crunched the King of Pop’s estate has generated approximately $1 billion since his death. A surprising bottom line for Jackson, who was reported to be distressingly in debt at the time of his passing in June 2009, but with the push of huge merchandising deals, pending album releases and some lucrative publishing and film deals, Jackson’s estate has clearly avoided any outstanding financial obligations. Although much of his revenue generated from nostalgic album sales, one year since his death, the numbers are broken down like this: Music: $429 Million
- 9 million albums sold in the U.S., 24 million sold around the globe, along with approximately 800,000 copies of albums by the Jackson 5 and the Jacksons. Average worldwide retail sales price at $11.62 per unit. Jackson’s catalog brought in about a total of $383 million.
- 12.9 million track downloads in the U.S. over the past year, 26.5 million in international downloads, totaling $34 million.
- $1.5 million in ringtone sales in America, $5 million globally, as well as $2 million from digital performance royalties from music subscription services, and $4.5 million from global digital performances.
TV and Movie: $409 Million
- Sony purchased the rights to the “Michael Jackson: This Is It” documentary for $60 million.
- “This Is It” became highest-grossing concert film ever, earning $72 million and an additional $188 million overseas.
- DVD of the film raked in $43 million in the U.S., as well as $24 million in rental income.
- $7 million in Blu-ray sales.
- Billboard also speculated that the sales of the TV rights to “This Is It” to Viacom may have generated an additional $15 million.
Publishing: $130 million
- The singer’s Mijac publishing company, doubled its average revenue to $50 million in the past year.
- Jackson’s part ownership of Sony/ATV catalog is an additional $80 million a year.
Miscellaneous: $270 – $320 million
- The executors of Jackson’s estate have cut a series of deals resulting in around $35 million in additional revenue.
- Keepsake tickets for his London This is It shows worth $6.5 million, along with around $15 million in concert merchandise sales.
- A Jackson memorabilia exhibit in Japan has earned $3.5 million.
- Additional licensing royalties and retail sales could have rolled up $10 million or more.
- Sony Music Entertainment, in a deal with the estate, is set to release ten Jackson albums through 2017, a guaranteed $200 – $250 million.