Tiger Woods: The First $1B Athlete

Tiger Woods celebrates after sinking the putt to win the Arnold Palmer Invitational golf tournament at Bay Hill in Orlando, Fla., Sunday, March 29, 2009. Woods closed with a 3-under 67 for a one-shot victory over Sean O'Hair. (AP Photo/John Raoux) AP Photo/John Raoux

Tiger Woods had two reasons to celebrate his victory at the FedEx Cup in Atlanta last Sunday.

Not only did he earn another trophy, he set another record as well, becoming the first athlete to top $1 billion in career earnings, according to Forbes magazine.

"Tiger's earnings power is really unprecedented," Forbes writer Kurt Badenhausen told CBS News Correspondent Terrell Brown.

Since bursting onto the PGA tour in 1996, Woods has dominated golf, winning 92 tournaments.

And sponsors have been eager to attach his name to their brands.

"It's an extremely wealthy demographic that is going out and wants to spend money on equipment, on golf balls, on apparel," Badenhausen explains.

Woods is or has been in ad campaigns for cars, golf clubs, even razors. He is, observes Brown, "a walking, talking money-making machine. You might as well call him 'Tiger, Inc.'"

Forbes says Woods has racked up $125 million in prize money and some $890 million from endorsements.

Nike is by far his biggest sponsor, paying Woods more than $30 million dollars a year.

"He makes more than $100 million a year," Badenhausen points out. "The next wealthiest athletes make in the neighborhood of $40, $45 million a year."

Sports' First Billion-Dollar Man (Forbes.com)

While he might be tempted to slow down and spend more time with his wife and two children, he's not done building his incredible business empire just yet, Brown notes. Woods recently launched a golf course design company that, Brown says, could be his most lucrative business yet.
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