Kevin O’Leary Net Worth [How Mr. Wonderful Did It]

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Net Worth:$450 million
Profession/Career:Businessman, Investor, Shark on Shark Tank
YouTube Channel:Kevin O’Leary
College:University of Waterloo, Ivey Business School at the University of Western Ontario (UWO)
Major/Degree:BS in Environmental Studies and Psychology at Waterloo, MBA at UWO
Full Name:Terence Thomas Kevin O’Leary
Date of Birth (Age):July 9, 1954 (68 years old)
Place of Birth:Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Height:5 ft 10 in

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Net Worth of Kevin O’Leary

Kevin O’Leary’s net worth is estimated to be roughly $450 million in 2022.

If you’re quite surprised that Kevin O’Leary isn’t a billionaire, don’t be! Many people are in the same boat as you. Although Kevin O’Leary has done quite well for himself, the idea that his net worth is over $1 billion isn’t true. He handles himself extremely well, so one could suppose that he is a lot wealthier than his actual net worth might make him out to be.

Most of his initial money was made from the sale of his company, The Learning Company (TLC), and the sale was for around $4 billion. Plus, he’s done numerous deals involving other businesses since then. So how is it that Kevin O’Leary isn’t a billionaire?

Why is Kevin O’Leary’s net worth so (relatively) low?

Make no mistake. Kevin O’Leary is wealthy. He sold one of his first companies, TLC, for $4 billion to Mattel. And that is a staggering feat. The reason he’s not a billionaire from it is rather simple: he didn’t own even close to a majority of the company when it sold. In fact, it was bleeding money to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars a year prior to its sale, to the point where it was over $1 billion in debt by 1998. Why then, did Mattel purchase it for $4 billion in 1999? Well, it was simply a bad business deal that stemmed out of bad due diligence and desperation. Mattel hired an outside firm called Center for Financial Research and Analysis (CFRA) who initially estimated the purchase of TLC to bring in extra revenue of roughly $50 million per year, but later revised to a loss of $50-100 million a year. As Mattel had already made the purchase, it turned out to be one of their biggest blunders ever. Kevin O’Leary came out on the better end, despite being fired 6 months into his role as president of Mattel’s TLC division. Between sale of his Mattel stock and his severance package, he came out over $11 million richer. It’s a story that’s very similar to Mark Cuban’s, when Mark himself had sold a company to Yahoo at the height of the dot-com bubble, only to have that company be one of Yahoo’s worst investments ever made, while Mark himself came out much richer from it.

The fact that Kevin O’Leary isn’t a billionaire from the sale of TLC is not in the least shocking once you know how businesses are owned and sold. The fact that he’s not a billionaire is more shocking because he likes to play one on TV. Kevin himself has been on record stating that he knows he plays a billionaire on TV, even though he’s not. And honestly, he does a pretty great job at it. He knows that his persona exudes billionaire status to everyone watching. Many people believe he is one, but if they’ve never looked it up, they would likely never have known he wasn’t.

How much does Kevin O’Leary earn in a year?

Kevin O’Leary is estimated to earn roughly $25 million a year.

Kevin lives on $650K a year in Los Angeles, California, so he has to make at least that just to pay his extravagant bills. Fortunately, he is estimated to make much more than that through his TV appearances and his business investments that he’s accumulated throughout the years. For his role in Shark Tank, Kevin reportedly makes around $50K per episode. With roughly 25 episodes per season, that equates to $1.25 million per year, or over $15 million throughout the lifetime of the show. Although that’s a fine amount, clearly the majority of his earnings come from his investments, whether through businesses or the market.

Here are some of his top business investment deals made by Kevin O’Leary on Shark Tank:

  • LovePop (15% equity, $50M+ in revenue thus far)
  • Snarky Tea (50% equity, $1M in revenue per year)
  • Benjilock (15% equity, $5M in revenue per year)

Kevin O’Leary has also written some books as well that earn him royalties in perpetuity, exactly his kind of income:

  • Cold Hard Truth: On Business, Money & Life
  • Cold Hard Truth: On Men, Women & Money
  • Cole Hard Truth: On Family, Kids & Money

Did Kevin O’Leary grow up rich or poor?

Kevin O’Leary grew up in a middle-class household with a mom, Georgette, who was a businesswoman. Although she wasn’t uber-wealthy from her business, she did make good money, and instilled many business ideals to her son Kevin. She paid for everything for Kevin O’Leary, including college tuition and living expenses, and then cut him off financially once those were done. And she advocated that Kevin do the same for his kids, which he did in similar fashion. He paid for their colleges so that they could graduate without debt the way his mom allowed to graduate college without debt, but from there on, it was up to them to survive and make it in the real world.

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