Serena Williams is the most dominant female athlete of all time, as her 23 Grand Slam singles titles is the record for Major wins in the Open Era.
Serena has converted her nearly two decades of preeminence into a well-deserved fortune. Coming straight outta Compton, Serena has transcended the sport of tennis to become a true global icon. And with a record amount of winnings on the court and lucrative endorsements off it, she could retire now to go relax on a beach somewhere and be set for life. But don’t expect that to happen anytime soon; she’s still kicking ass and taking names. So let’s examine how much she’s really worth.
Serena Williams’s Net Worth as of 2019: $145 million
Serena famously began playing tennis at age three alongside her older sister Venus in the notoriously rough city of Compton, California. The two girls were taught by their father, Richard Williams, who had never played tennis before but who drove the girls to realize their prodigal potential. In addition to her 23 singles Grand Slam championships, she has won 13 doubles Grand Slams with Venus, and two mixed doubles Grand Slams. Serena was the 47th highest earning athlete in the world in 2015, and second highest earning woman athlete after rival Maria Sharapova. Williams raked in $24.6 million in 2015, including $13 million from her endorsement deals with companies like Nike, Kraft, Gatorade and Beats by Dre.
Serena made her professional debut in 1995 at the age of 14. Throughout her childhood her father pushed the Williams sisters with the goal of them one day being among the best in the world. Growing up, she was to a degree in big sister Venus’s shadow; Venus made the final of the first Grand Slam tournament she entered in 1997, at the age of 17. However it was Serena who broke through to win a major singles title first when she captured the 1999 US Open at just 18 years old. Serena’s dazzling power game made it clear to all onlookers that her potential was limitless.
After her US Open triumph, Serena continued to exemplify her otherworldly talent and steadily climbed up the female rankings. In 2002 into 2003, Serena eclipsed her older sister and established herself as the game’s top dog when she annihilated all comers en route to four successive Grand Slam titles, dubbed the “Serena Slam”. Since then nobody’s been able to knock her off the throne, only impeded at times by injuries, and this consistent success has led to her 8-figure yearly earnings ever since.
2003 also was the year of personal tragedy for Serena and Venus when their half-sister Yetunde Price was accidentally killed during a drive-by shooting by gang members in Compton.
As a result of a combination of a loss of focus and a series of troubling injuries, the next few years were the most challenging of Serena’s career. From 2004-2008 she won only 3 grand slams. Yet despite this relative down period, Serena still did alright for her bank account when in 2004 she signed a $40 million dollar endorsement deal with Nike after her contract with Puma expired. She also started to become involved in fashion design during this period.
After getting healthy, Serena climbed back to the top and hasn’t loosened her stranglehold on the women’s game at all. She and Venus, who live together in Florida, bought a minority share of the Miami Dolphins in 2009. Since 2009, she has won 9 more Grand Slam titles, and continues to be one of the most famous women in the world.
She has won more than twice as much prize money as any other women’s tennis player in history. Despite those gaudy numbers, she actually makes the majority of her earnings from endorsements, according to Forbes. Tennis is a sport notorious for short careers, so to see Serena continue to be at her best in her mid-30’s is a tribute to her greatness. And that is how she came to be worth a cool $145 million. Not bad for a kid from Compton… or from anywhere else.
Probably among the most renowned women tennis athlete, Serena Williams will hope to etch her name as the GOAT with the season rolling down.
Serena Williams faced Roger Federer on 1st January in a doubles match and lost at the Hopman Cup.