Michael Jordan is a very rich man and now thanks to a decision in a court case involving the Chicago Bulls legend and the now-defunct supermarket chain Dominick’s, he will be $8.9 million richer. Jordan said he plans to donate the money to charity.
From ESPN’s Darren Rovell:
Lawyers for Safeway, owner of now-defunct Chicago-based chain Dominick’s, said Jordan should be paid $126,900 for the use of his name in a 2009 ad Dominick’s placed in a commemorative issue of Sports Illustrated published for Jordan’s induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. But Jordan’s lawyers and Jordan himself testified that his endorsement history suggests he would not have taken that deal.
Jordan’s legal representatives brought in sports economist Andrew Zimbalist, who testified that Jordan’s fair market value for the ad was $10 million.
“I’m pleased with today’s verdict,” Jordan said in a statement. “No one — whether or not they’re a public figure — should have to worry about their identity being used without their permission. The case was not about the money as I plan to donate the proceeds to charity. It was about honesty and integrity. I hope this case sends a clear message, both here in the United States and around the world, that I will continue to be vigilant about protecting my name and identity. I also hope the size of the monetary reward will deter others from using someone else’s identity and believe they will only pay a small penalty.”
BREAKING: Jury says Safeway, Dominick’s owner, has to pay Michael Jordan $8.9 MILLION for this ad in SI in 2009 pic.twitter.com/DD6O7Rt3D9
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) August 22, 2015
While it may sound like Jordan went through a lot just to win money that he is going to donate to charity, this is an important verdict for him. Since he is such a big star around the world, people have and will take advantage of Jordan. The amount of money he was awarded in this verdict should help him protect his name as it has set a precedence for how much Jordan is actually worth.