He has played in the NBA and also has a Ph.D. in coaching and an MBA. He started with one Five Guys business and now owns over a hundred of them, along with 150 car washes and a movie theater.

Former NBA star Shaquille O’Neal spoke at a meeting of the International Franchise Association in San Diego in February of last year. This came as a total surprise to everyone there. “The great Magic Johnson taught me that it’s fine to be a basketball star, but you should start investing in businesses at some point,” O’Neal told CNBC in an interview.

The young athlete who spent a million dollars in one day died when he was 21. He joined the Orlando Magic in 1992, but he is no longer on the team. After 19 years as a professional player and investments in restaurants and fast food chains, O’Neal is worth about $400 million (just under €380 million). He is the NBA’s fifth-richest player, after “Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Junior Bridgeman, and LeBron James”, who has $1 billion.

The idea behind a brand is simple. Make sure to follow the directions to keep it running once it does. If you stick to your values, you will do well. O’Neal has become the clear king of licensing because of the way he thinks. He also has an MBA from the University of Phoenix and a Ph.D. in teaching. Nothing more than a nice thing to put on my resume when I go back to work. Ten years ago, when the player graduated from high school, he said, “I might have to give up basketball and work 9 to 5 like everyone else.”

Since 2011, when he left the NBA, he has owned 155 Five Guys restaurants, which gives him 10% of the company. He went into business sales later. O’Neal has shares in 17 Auntie Anne’s Pretzels and 9 Papa John’s Pizzas.

He owns a movie theater in Newark and has put money into 40 24-hour gyms and 150 car washes. He has also put money into a chain of restaurants. In 2018, he started his Big Chicken chicken sandwich business. There are more than ten of the billionaire’s businesses in Las Vegas, and he wants to grow into Austin and Phoenix. His job as “Chief Fun Officer” on the Carnival ship line led to the creation of the chicken sandwich at the fast food chain. Because he likes to cook so much, he put together a recipe in early April. Shaq says that in his book, he gives “championship recipes for feeding family and friends.” On the cover, you can see burgers, cookies, and fried chicken, among other things. He wanted the book to be called “Recipes for Dummies,” so he put in recipes like “Big Chicken” that even a beginner cook could make.

Trust the company and go with what you think is best.

The four-time NBA champion seems to have known from the start that money can leave as quickly as it came. A study by Sports Illustrated found that 60% of NBA players who quit in the last five years went bankrupt. Dennis Rodman and Scottie Pippen did not have this happen to them like it did to Shaq.

The player left the NBA with a net worth of $392 million (€318 million). This included $292 million (€277 million) from basketball and $220 million (€209 million) from sponsorships and ads for Oreos, Pepsi, and Reebok. Just before he quit basketball, O’Neal got shares in Google. I once heard two guys talking about how great Google search engines are. I’d really like to go out and spend some money. He told The Wall Street Journal in an interview in 2019 that “my guy set it up, we invested, and then I forgot about it.”

In the same interview, the athlete also said that one of the reasons he was so successful in business was that he never promoted or invested in a company whose goods he wouldn’t buy himself. “My talent is that if I don’t believe in something that comes across my desk, I won’t even look at it,” O’Neal said. The athlete turned down an offer to be a brand spokesman for Wheaties because he liked Frosted Flakes better. He would then be on their cereal boxes in the morning.

He said that not all of his gut feelings have been right. O’Neal, an actor, radio host, and former DJ, wished he had worked with Starbucks’ CEO. My company’s rep just called me and said, “Howard Schultz wants to do business with you, and I’d like some coffee.” American author Graham Bensinger said, “When I was a kid, I never saw a Black person drink coffee.”I was being looked at by the great Howard Schutz, so I looked him in the eye and said, “Sir, black people don’t drink coffee.” Just looks like it wouldn’t work. At that point, you should have seen his face.



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