With a record-breaking tour, a blockbuster movie and a shrewd mind for business, the 33-year-old singer is now worth an estimated $1.1 billion.
Taylor Swift’s Eras tour started out as a retrospective of her nearly two-decade career and a celebration of her 10 iconic albums. It has become an unprecedented financial phenomenon that has already brought in $780 million in ticket sales, on its way to becoming the highest-grossing tour of all time. And it’s ushered the 33-year-old pop queen into yet another new era: she is now a billionaire and the first musician to make the ranks solely based on her songs and performances. According to Forbes estimates, she is worth more than $1.1 billion, up $360 million from June when Swift ranked no. 34 among America’s richest self made women.
Much of that boost comes from her unforgettable summer. She pocketed an estimated $190 million after taxes from the first leg of the Eras tour and another $35 million from the first two weeks of screenings of Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour movie. Altogether more than $500 million of Swift’s fortune is cash earned from music royalties and touring. Another $500 million is based on the rising value of her music catalog, and she has $125 million in real estate including six homes and a $10 million private plane.
Representatives for Swift did not answer Forbes’ multiple requests for comment.
Her rise comes amid a boom for celebrity billionaires. She is the 15th celebrity in Forbes’ rankings to earn the billionaire moniker, and the ninth to do so in the last three years. She is also one of just four musicians to have officially achieved that status. But unlike her superstar colleagues, Swift doesn’t have a profitable side-hustle boosting her net worth. Jay-Z’s music didn’t solely propel him to billionaire status, it was his two booze brands, Armand de Brignac and D’usse, and his investments in companies like Uber. Similarly, Rihanna became a billionaire thanks to the success of her companies Fenty Beauty, a joint venture with luxury powerhouse LVMH, and her lingerie line Savage X Fenty. And while years on the road contributed significantly to the late Jimmy Buffett’s net worth, his Margaritaville Holdings empire, alcohol lines and investment in Berkshire Hathaway led Forbes to declare him a billionaire in April before his September death.
That puts Swift in a class with legends like Bruce Springsteen. His lifetime pre-tax earnings are over $1 billion, the majority of which was earned on the road touring.
Swift and Springsteen have another thing in common: the value of their catalogs. In 2021, The Boss sold his masters and publishing rights for his songwriting and recorded music for nearly $500 million, sources told Forbes at the time. Swift’s catalog is now worth roughly the same, sources tell Forbes.
Her master recordings—her first six albums—were famously scooped up in 2019 by Scooter Braun and later sold to Shamrock Capital for $300 million, which Swift claims was done behind her back. The pop singer famously took back control of her music shortly after that. Following a bitter public dispute, Swift got her revenge, signing a lucrative distribution deal with Universal Music Group that gave her complete ownership and full economic interest in both the songwriting and the recordings. She has since released four new albums and re-recorded versions of four albums that were part of the Shamrock sale, including 1989 (Taylor’s Version) that was released at midnight on Friday.
Her catalog “is a testament to the exceptional reach and impact an artist can achieve. Her music not only transcends borders but also defies the challenges faced by creatives in the streaming era,” Alex Heiche, the founder and CEO of Sound Royalties, tells Forbes.
Swift’s numbers don’t lie: since she released her 2019 album Lover—her first under her deal with UMG, her U.S. album sales including track sale and streaming equivalents have totaled 37.3 million, according to data provided to Forbes by Luminate. “Given [her] sustained music industry dominance and her transformation into a global brand, it’s evident that the catalog’s value has substantially appreciated,” says Heiche, who notes that her original six-album master catalog was valued at $140 million by Braun’s team just five years ago.
Notably, Swift wrote nearly all of her top 50 Billboard chart hits—she’s the sole writer on over one-fourth of them—boosting her share of the publishing pot significantly. Of course, she shares credits with frequent collaborators like Jack Antonoff and Max Martin, who would receive a portion of any hypothetical sale.
The pop superstar couldn’t have done it without the Swifties, her uber faithful fans. “You’re like a main character in why this tour is so special,” she gushed at her movie’s premiere. “And I can’t thank you enough for that.” She gave them a shoutout in the trailer, too.
“This has been the most extraordinary experience of my entire life.”
This article was first published on forbes.com and all figures are in USD.