Matthew Cohen | Site Editor
Every year since 1999, Forbes Magazine has produced its annual ranking of the World’s Highest Paid Celebrities, profiling the top-paid entertainers on the planet. On Monday, Forbes release it’s 2015 list, as yet another reminder of just how filthy stinking rich these people really are.
This year, a trio of golfers made the cut – (36) Phil Mickelson, (37) Tiger Woods and (41) Rory McIlroy, in that order. None of the three are any real big surprise.
Boxers Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao ranked 1-2, with earnings of $300 million and $160 million, respectively.
Credit to Forbes for doing a stellar job in putting their latest ranking together, and for computing millions and millions of dollars in earnings. Here’s the write-ups for Phil, Tiger and Rory, which breakdown how much each golfer earned from PGA Tour winnings and sponsorship deals. Now the question begs, what would you do with $50 million in the bank?
Mickelson earns more than $40 million annually from appearances and endorsement partners Callaway, Barclays, KPMG, Exxon Mobil, Rolex and Amgen. He picked up a deal to promote psoriatic arthritis drug Enbrel after he was diagnosed with the disease in 2010 and used the drug for his treatment. The five-time Major champion re-upped with Callaway last year in a multi-year deal to use Callaway’s clubs, balls and bag during tournaments. It continues a partnership that began in 2004. Mickelson has racked up 42 PGA victories (ninth all-time), but his last win came two years ago at the 2013 British Open. His $77 million in career prize money ranks second all-time. – Forbes
Woods made only seven cuts in 13 events during 2014 and the first half of 2015. It is a staggering fall for a player who made a record 142 straight cuts over seven years ending in 2005. Blame injuries to his elbow and back, which hampered the 14-time Majors winner over the last two years. His last Major win was the 2008 U.S. Open. The injuries dented Woods’ bank account since he couldn’t appear in his typical slate of overseas events where he racks up multi-million appearance fees. His prize money was only $600,000 over the last 12 months.
Woods did pick up new endorsement deals in 2014 with MusclePharm and India’s Hero motorcycles. Hero also signed on as the title sponsor of the golf event Woods hosts annually at the end of the year in Florida. Woods’ golf course-design business has also picked up after multiple blowups. The first Woods-designed course opened in 2014 in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. His first U.S. course is set to open outside of Houston in October. Woods is also working on course in China and Dubai. – Forbes
The world’s top-ranked golfer has been on a huge roll with five PGA victories, including two Majors, over the last 12 months. The wins helped him earn $16.3 million in prize money, as well as valuable bonuses from chief sponsor Nike. McIlroy replaced Tiger Woods as the face of Electronic Arts golf video game. Woods served as the name on the game for 16 versions between 1998 and 2013. This year’s version will be Rory McIlroy PGA Tour (EA Sports did not release a version in 2014). Other partners include Omega, Bose and Upper Deck. McIlroy settled a messy lawsuit in February with his former agents who accused the golfer of owing millions of dollars in commissions from endorsement contracts and prize money. – Forbes