Pele Net Worth | How Pele Amassed A $100M Fortune

Pele Net Worth | Pele, the soccer superstar from Brazil, is famous around the globe. He’s not just known for his soccer moves. 

He’s also known for how he makes money. Born and raised on the streets of Brazil, Pele has made a whopping $100 million. 

That’s a lot of money, right? But, did you know? The money Pele made didn’t all come from soccer. He made money in more ways than one. He made money from soccer, of course. 

But, he also made money from endorsing brands. He even made money from things he did when he wasn’t playing soccer.

In this article, we will dive deep into how Pele made his fortune. We’ll look at how he made money from playing soccer. 

We’ll examine how he worked with businesses to make money. And, we’ll explore his life outside of soccer and how that added to his wealth.

So, get ready. We are about to explore the amazing money journey of Pele, the soccer legend and multi-millionaire.

Full NameEdson Arantes do Nascimento
Popularly Known AsPele
Date of BirthOctober 23, 1940
Height1.73m (5ft 8in)
ProfessionFormer professional footballer
Net Worth$100 million
SalaryWorld Cup winner (1958, 1962, 1970), FIFA co-Player of the Century (1999), Inducted into the American National Soccer Hall of Fame, Active Philanthropist with Paleo Foundation
Yearly Income$10 million
Relationship StatusMarried (to Marcia Cibele Aoki)
Major Source of IncomeFootball career, Endorsements, Business ventures
Other Important NoteWorld Cup winner (1958, 1962, 1970), FIFA co-Player of the Century (1999), Inducted into the American National Soccer Hall of Fame, Active Philanthropist with Peleo Foundation

Early Football Career

Early Football Career
Early Football Career

Pele (Edson Arantes do Nascimento) first gained international attention in 1956 at age 15.  

When he began playing professionally for Santos FC in Sao Paulo, Brazil. 

Despite his young age, Pele quickly became an integral part of the Santos squad and helped lead them to their first São Paulo state title in 1958. 

This marked the beginning of a successful period for Santos FC. They went on to win 10 São Paulo state titles between 1958 and 1973 with Pele on the roster.

Pele’s meteoric rise and goal-scoring prowess for Santos FC helped cement his status as a football legend in Brazil at a young age. 

By age 17, he was called up to the Brazilian national team and selected to play in the 1958 FIFA World Cup in Sweden.

World Cup Success

World Cup Success
World Cup Success

Pelé made his international debut for Brazil at age 16 in a friendly match against Argentina on July 7, 1957. 

Only a year later, he was called up to play in the 1958 FIFA World Cup in Sweden at the age of 17. 

This made Pelé the youngest player ever to play in a World Cup final match. Pelé was instrumental in helping Brazil secure their first World Cup title in 1958. 

He scored six goals in the tournament, including a hat-trick in the semifinal against France and two goals in the final against hosts Sweden. 

This phenomenal performance at such a young age led Pelé to be dubbed “O Rei” (The King) by fans and media. Pelé went on to help Brazil win two more World Cup titles in 1962 and 1970. 

In total, he scored 12 goals over 14 World Cup matches, a record that stood for over 30 years until it was surpassed by German striker Miroslav Klose in 2014. 

Pelé’s illustrious World Cup career cemented his legacy as one of the greatest players of all time.

New York Cosmos

New York Cosmos
New York Cosmos

Pele signed with the New York Cosmos in 1975, agreeing to a three-year contract worth a reported $7 million. 

Which made him the highest-paid athlete in the world at the time. Though past his prime at 34 years old. 

Pele’s presence brought publicity and popularity to the struggling North American Soccer League.

During his time with the Cosmos from 1975-1977. Pele was instrumental in generating interest and enthusiasm for soccer in the United States. 

His skill on the field demonstrated the artistry and brilliance of the “beautiful game” to American sports fans. 

Who was more used to baseball, American football, and basketball? Pele led the Cosmos to the NASL championship in his final season. 

Capping off an illustrious career by helping spread the reach of the world’s most popular sport.



Throughout his career, Pelé amassed a fortune through his endorsement deals and appearances in films and media. 

One of his earliest major endorsement deals was with Puma in 1970, which was reportedly worth $120,000 over two years. 

This enabled Puma to compete against rival Adidas in the football boot market. Besides Puma, Pelé also had endorsement deals with brands like Pepsi and Procter & Gamble. 

His global popularity and status as one of the greatest footballers of all time enabled him to earn millions promoting consumer brands. 

Pelé appeared in commercials and ad campaigns that were aired across the world. Beyond consumer brands, Pelé capitalized on his fame through appearances in films. 

Most notably, he had a starring role in the 1981 prisoner-of-war film Escape to Victory. Alongside other football legends like Bobby Moore and Osvaldo Ardiles. 

While Pelé was not known for his acting skills, his sheer star power resulted in a massive box office draw. 

The endorsements and film appearances were lucrative for Pelé and were a key component of building his net worth over his career.



After retiring from professional soccer in 1977. Pele remained an active ambassador for the sport through various roles and engagements. 

He was named Honorary President of the New York Cosmos, allowing him to continue his association with the club.

Throughout the 1980s and beyond. Pele traveled as a representative of soccer. He participated in exhibition matches, coaching clinics, and motivational speaking. 

His stature as the world’s most famous soccer player opened doors for ambassadorial positions. Such as for the United Nations’ development and environment projects.

Pele also focused on growing the game at the grassroots level by opening soccer schools. 

In the United States, he founded the Pele Soccer Camps in 1978. Providing coaching to thousands of young players during summer programs. 

In Brazil, his Pele Academies sought to teach life skills through soccer to impoverished children. Overall, Pele remained highly visible as an ambassador for soccer well after his playing days. 

His ongoing contributions and dedication to the development of the sport further cemented his iconic legacy.

Total Career Earnings

Total Career Earnings
Total Career Earnings

Throughout his career, Pelé earned an estimated total of $2-4 million in salary from Santos FC and the New York Cosmos. 

While this may seem low by today’s standards. His earnings were considered massive at the time, especially for a Brazilian footballer.

To put this into perspective, Pelé’s annual salary of $225,000 with the New York Cosmos in 1975 would be over $1 million today accounting for inflation. 

In contrast, the highest-paid soccer player today, Lionel Messi, earned $126 million in total compensation in 2021 from his salary, bonuses, and endorsements according to Forbes.

While modern soccer salaries dwarf what Pelé earned from soccer decades ago. His earnings were massive for his era and cemented his status as one of the highest-paid athletes of his time.

Net Worth At Death

Net Worth At Death
Net Worth At Death

At the time of his death in late 2022, Pele’s net worth was estimated to be around $100 million. 

This considerable fortune was accrued through his playing career and post-retirement endorsements and business deals.

Upon his passing, it was revealed that Pele had a detailed will outlining how his assets would be distributed. 

The bulk of his estate went to his third wife, Marcia Aoki, as well as his six living children. Smaller portions were left to extended family members. 

While the exact amounts were kept private, it was clear that Pele wanted to provide for his loved ones even after his death. 

With careful financial planning throughout his life. The football icon was able to amass and preserve a sizable fortune that lives on through his family.



Pelé is widely regarded as one of the greatest footballers of all time. He received many awards and honors throughout his illustrious career. 

In 1999, he was named FIFA Player of the Century alongside Diego Maradona. The birth of the foundation “Fundação Pelé”. Pelé was also awarded the International Peace Award for his work with UNICEF in 1978. 

He was named Brazil’s Minister of Sport in 1995 and received Brazil’s highest civilian honor, the Order of the Republic, in 1997.

Pelé has always tried to use his global fame to make a positive difference in the world. In 2018, he started the Pelé Foundation, which works to end poverty for children around the globe. 

The foundation has partnered with organizations like Santander Bank to provide sports programs and education opportunities for youth.

Remembering Pelé: Soccer Superstar and Humanitarian. Pelé has supported over two dozen charities focused on children, education, health, humanitarian relief, and sports.

Profile of Pelé’s support for charities including Great Ormond Street Hospital, 46664, and FC Harlem. Pelé: Charity Work & Causes – Look to the Stars.

He has lived by his motto “Success is no accident”. Though his playing days ended decades ago. 

Pelé’s legacy as an athlete, humanitarian, and global icon continues to inspire future generations.

Unmasking The Financial Legend: FAQs About Pele’s Net Worth

What is Pele’s net worth?

Pele has an estimated net worth of $100 million.

How did Pele accumulate his net worth?

Pele accumulated his net worth through his football career, endorsements, business ventures, and media appearances.

When was Pele born?

Pele was born on October 23, 1940.

What is Pele’s real name?

Pele’s real name is Edson Arantes do Nascimento.

What was Pele’s salary as a footballer?

Pele’s salary is estimated to be around $2.8 million, he earned significant income during his time with Santos FC and New York Cosmos, as well as national team appearances.

What companies have Pele endorsed?

Pele has endorsed various brands, including Puma, Santos, Subway, Emirates, Procter & Gamble, and Volkswagen.

What is Pele’s current yearly income?

Pele’s current yearly income is $10 million, depending on his ongoing endorsements and business ventures.

Is Pele involved in philanthropic activities?

Pele is an active philanthropist. He has established the Paleo Foundation to help the less fortunate in Brazil and is a goodwill ambassador for various nonprofit organizations.

What was Pele’s most significant endorsement deal?

While details of individual endorsement deals remain undisclosed, Pele’s Puma deal during the 1970 World Cup is widely regarded as one of the earliest and most successful examples of ambush marketing.

What other income streams does Pele have?

Pele has income streams such as film appearances, video game promotions, and his biographical documentary.

What is Pele’s marital status?

Pele is married to Marcia Cibele Aoki.

Is Pele’s net worth higher than other football legends?

Pele’s net worth is one of the highest among football legends. However, some modern footballers like Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have higher net worths due to enhanced salary structures and global marketing power in today’s sports economy.


Pele turns soccer magic into solid gold. He’s not just a big name in sports, but also a successful global brand worth a huge $100 million.

He didn’t just make this fortune from his amazing games on the field. He also made money after his soccer days were over. You see, Pele’s name still means a lot in football today.

So, his wealth keeps growing. The story of Pele proves that you can keep making money even after you leave the pitch. It all comes down to how well you use your name and fame.

Pele’s $100 million fortune is mind-blowing. It’s not just about his goals and wins in football. It’s also about how smart he was with brand partnerships and charity work. 

Even after leaving football, his fame brings in plenty of opportunities. His wealth still grows stronger every day.

Finally, Pele’s story shows us that talent, and hard work, always find rewards. If you’re willing to adapt and try new things, you can make your mark in more ways than one. 

Young athletes should look at Pele not just for his soccer skills, but also for his money-smarts. 

Pele’s football journey didn’t just make him famous. It also made him a great business role model.

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