|Full name||Serena Jameka Williams|
|Birthday||September 26, 1981|
|Serena Williams net worth||$260 million|
|Source of wealth||Tennis, endorsements|
|Marital status||Married (Alexis Ohanian)|
|Nickname(s)||The Tennis Playing Truck, The Beast of Burden, Meka, ReRe, The King of WTA, Momma Smash|
Serena Williams is an American professional tennis player with a net worth of $260 million, according to Forbes. Her wealth has soared by 20 million over the past year. In 2019 and 2020 Serena Williams net worth stood at $225 million. She’s ranked the 90th wealthiest self-made woman in America this year.
Having taken home $45.9 million in earnings last year, Serena is the world’s 31st highest paid athlete and the second-best paid female athlete on the planet this year. She makes most of her millions through brand endorsements. Last year she earned just $300,000 in prize money and a whopping $45 million from endorsement deals with companies like Gatorade and DirecTV.
Williams is the all-time leader in WTA career prize money having accumulated a total of $94.5 million. She’s followed by her sister Venus Williams with $42.2 million. Serena has a total of 73 titles and ranks 5th overall. She has won more Grand Slam titles (23) than any tennis player in the Open Era. Off the court, Serena sits on the board of Momentive, SurveyMonkey’s parent company. She also serves as an advisor to the NFT firm Sorare.
This is how Serena Williams started and how she makes and spends her millions.
Serena Williams was born on September 26, 1981, in Saginaw, Michigan to Richard Williams and Oracene Price, who were both tennis coaches. Serena began playing tennis at age four after her family moved to Compton, California. She was homeschooled and coached by her father alongside Venus Williams, her elder sister. A few years later, the family again moved to West Palm Beach, Florida where Serena joined Rick Macci’s tennis academy while still being coached by her parents.
By the time she was nine, Serena Williams had an impressive 46-3 record on the United States Tennis Association junior tour and was ranked first among under-10 players in Florida. At one point her father did not want her to attend national junior tennis tournaments due to experiences of racism as he also needed his daughters to concentrate on their studies. In the ninth grade, Serena and Venus stopped attending Macci’s academy and were coached at home by their parents.
Professional Career highlights
Despite her parents not wanting her to participate in professional tournaments until she was 16, Williams made her professional debut in October 1995 when she was just 14 at the Bell Challenge in Quebec, Canada.
In 1997 Serena was ranked No. 304 and became the lowest ranked player in the Open Era to defeat two top-10 opponents in one tournament after beating Mary Pierce who was ranked No. 7 and Monica Seles who was ranked No. 4. She was ranked No. 99 by the end of the year.
Williams won her first professional singles title in 1999 aftr beating Amelie Mauresmo in the final of the Open Gaz de France in Paris. In the same year, she became the second African-American female tennis player to win a Grand Slam singles tournament after Althea Gibson in 1958. She was ranked No. 4 by the end of 1999. She was just 18 at the time.
In 2002 Williams beat the reigning champion Capriati in the semifinals of the French Open and defeated her sister Venus to win her second Grand Slam tournament title, raising her ranking to No. 2 trailing only Venus. She went on to win her third Grand Slam at the 2002 Wimbledon Championships again defeating her sister Venus. This was her first Wimbledon title, after which she was ranked No. 1 unseating her sister Venus. She became only the third African American woman to rank No. 1. Serena and Venus also won the Grand Slam doubles title at the tournament. Serena went on to win her third consecutive Grand Slam title after defeating her sister in the US Open.
For the first time since 1999, Serena ranked out of the top 10 after a loss to Maria Sharapova at Wimbledon in 2004. She however finished the year ranking No. 7 but did not win a Grand Slam singles tournament for the first season since 2001. She did not return to the No. 1 ranking until 2008 when she defeated Safina, sister Venus, and Jelena Jankovic in the final of the US Open.
In 2013 Williams won 11 titles making her the 8th player to win 11 or more titles in a year and the first since Martina Hingis in 1997. For the third time, she finished the year ranking No. 1. She was also named the best female athlete and the best female tennis player that year.
In September 2016, Serena equaled Steff Graf’s record for the longest run in the history of WTA after ranking No. 1 for 186 consecutive weeks. She was however dethroned by Angelique Kerber after losing to Karolina Pliskova in the semifinals of the US Open.
Since 1998, Serena has played 31 matches with older sister Venus. She has won 19 of them while her sister has won 12. Serena has played Martina Hingis in 13 professional matches and leads the series 7-6. She also leads the series with Jennifer Capriati 10-7. Williams has played Justine Henin 14 times winning 8 of those matches while she has won 18 of the 23 professional matches she has played Victoria Azarenka. As for Serena vs Maria Sharapova, Williams leads 20-2.
Williams has been ranked singles world No. 1 by the WTA for 319 weeks including a joint-record 186 successive weeks. She has finished as the year-end No. 1 five times.
Related: Simone Biles net worth
How Serena Williams makes her millions
Williams is the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) all-time leader in career prize money with a total of $94.5 million. She has earned more than twice her sister Venus, who ranks second in prize money with $42.2 million.
This year, Serena is ranked the second highest paid female athlete globally with $45.9 million in earnings — only behind Naomi Osaka who pocketed $57.3 million last year. Forbes reports that Williams is also the world’s 31st best-paid athlete this year. The tennis star only earned about $300,000 in prize money and made a cool $45 million from endorsement deals with firms such as DirecTV, Nike, and Gatorade.
Other companies that sponsor her include Wilson Sporting Goods, Gucci, Nike, Audemars Piguet, Ford Motor, Subway, among others. Her first partnership with Nike was a five-year deal worth $40 million in 2004.
In 2020 Williams was featured on Forbes Celebrity 100 with earnings of $36 million. She made $4 million in prize money and $32 million from endorsement deals the previous year. She also topped Forbes’ list of the world’s highest-paid female athletes in 2016 and 2017 with $29 million and $27 million in earnings (prize money and endorsements) respectively.
For six seasons in her career, Serena has earned more prize money than any other female tennis player. In 2009 the tennis ace earned $6.5 million in prize money, breaking Justine Hennin’s record for the most prize money earned by a female tennis player in one year. Four years later she became the first woman to win more than $10 million in prize money in a single season with a total of $12.3 million. In 2015 she won $10.5 million in prize money while in 2014 she won $9.3 million. She also earned $7 million in 2012 and $7.6 million in 2016.
Serena Williams also makes her millions from the fashion industry. She has a signature collection of handbags and jewelry that’s sold mainly on the Home Shopping Network (HSN). The line was launched in 2009. In 2010 she launched a nail collection and in 2018 Williams launched a clothing line called Serena.
How Serena Williams Spends her millions
The King of WTA lives in Miami, Florida in a Spanish mediterranean-style home that features 14,500 square feet of living space. According to House Digest, Williams paid $8 million for the property — which is located not too far from Venus and their parents. Although the home does not have a tennis court, it features heated floors in the bathrooms, a wine cellar, a sauna in the gym, an infinity pool, and a private trophy room where the superstar keeps her trophies. Venus’ interior design company V Starr custom designed the home’s interior.
Before moving into the Miami mansion with her husband and daughter, Serena lived in Palm Beach together with her older sister in an 8,489 square foot, six bedrooms, eight bathrooms mansion which they bought back in 1998 for about half a million bucks. The sisters put up the property for sale last year for about $2.4 million. Serena also paid about $6 million for a Beverly Hills home in 2017 which featured 6,000 square feet of living space, five bedrooms, and six bathrooms. Also in her real estate portfolio is a two-bedroom apartment in Paris with stunning views of the Eiffel Tower.
Serena loves to spend her millions on wheels. Her favorite ride is a $73,000 Lincoln Navigator that she nicknamed Ginger. She also owns a 2016 Mini Cooper, an Aston Martin Vanquish, a Bentley Continental GT, and a Mercedes G-Wagon.
Apart from buying properties and cars, Williams also spends her millions by investing in start-up companies through her venture capital firm Serena Ventures. She launched the investment company in 2014 and has since invested in more than 60 startups including Impossible Foods and the home fitness company Tonal. In March 2022, Serena Ventures announced that it had raised an inaugural fund of $111 million. In 2009 Serena and her sister Venus bought a minority stake in the Miami Dolphins of the NFL.
Williams is married to Alexis Ohanian, the co-founder of Reddit. According to brides.com, the two first met in Rome in 2015 while staying at the same hotel. On December 10, 2016, after dating for a year or so, Alexis took Serena to Rome, where they first met, to propose to her. They married on November 16, 2017, in New Orleans in a ceremony attended by the likes of Jay-Z, Beyonce, and Kim Kardashian among other celebrities. A month after their engagement, the couple discovered that they were pregnant. They welcomed their daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr on September 1, 2017. Serena Williams and his huband have a combined net worth of about $330 million. She and Beyonce are close friends.
Summary and quotes
Serena Williams has a net worth of $260 million. She’s one of the world’s richest tennis players and ranks among the wealthiest self-made women in the United States. The tennis champion has made most of her millions from endorsements and prize money. She spends her millions on properties, wheels and a couple of investments. Williams has invested in over 60 startups through her venture capital firm Serena Ventures. Below are some of the best quotes by Serena Williams.
- “Luck has nothing to do with it because I have spent many, many hours, countless hours, on the court working for my one moment in time, not knowing when it would come.”
- “Everyone’s dream can come true if you just stick to it and work hard.”
- “I love who I am, and I encourage other people to love and embrace who they are. But it definitely wasn’t easy – it took me a while.”
- “If anything, you know, I think losing makes me even more motivated.”
- “Since I don’t look like every other girl, it takes a while to be okay with that. To be different. But different is good.”