KEY POINTS

  • Shaquille O’Neal played for several NBA teams in his 19-year basketball career
  • He became an angel investor after retiring from basketball
  • He owns several nightclubs in Las Vegas and several fast-food franchises

Shaquille O’Neal is admired for his basketball talent, but he’s proven that his business skills are just as strong as his on-court capabilities. Here’s how he has built his business empire.

The former Los Angeles Lakers player has a net worth of $400 million as of 2021,  Celebrity Net Worth reported. His salary as a professional basketball player peaked at $27 million, and in his almost two decades of playing, his total earnings amounted to over $292 million.  

O’Neal, now an angel investor, said in a 2019 Wall Street Journal interview that he drew inspiration from Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos when it came to investing.

"I heard Jeff Bezos say one time [that] he makes his investments based on if it's going to change people's lives," he said. "Once I started doing that strategy, I think I probably quadrupled what I'm worth."

After retiring from his 19-year basketball career in 2011, O’Neal began putting his money where it could make a positive impact not only on his net worth but also on the world as a whole. He has put the money he made during his NBA career into various stocks, including early stakes in Apple and Google. 

O’Neal said in the same WSJ interview that he invested his money in stocks and other business ventures he likes. He is currently the joint owner of several Las Vegas nightclubs and fast-food franchises, including Krispy Kreme, Auntie Anne’s, Five Guys and Papa Johns,  CNN reported. He reportedly also co-owns 150 car washes, 40 24-hour fitness centers, a shopping center and a movie theater.

When asked about his best investment, he explained that though Google gave him the most returns, Krispy Kreme was his favorite.

"I like donuts ... Krispy Kreme is a fabulous donut. I was introduced to it in college and have been in love with it ever since," he said.

Real estate investing has also made O’Neal’s fortune soar, per Celebrity Net Worth. He once owned a 35,000-square-foot Orlando, Florida estate that features an indoor basketball court and a 17-car garage. He sold that property in 2021 for $16.5 million.

O'Neal also owns a 15-acre home in an Atlanta suburb that he purchased for $1.15 million in 2017. Additionally, O’Neal owed a Bell Canyon home that he sold for $2.5 million in 2019.

O'Neal's NBA career saw him playing for teams like the Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, Orlando Magic and the Boston Celtics.

Shaquille O'Neal Orlando Magic Shaquille O'Neal made $3 million as a rookie with the Orlando Magic. Photo: Getty