How Did Jerry Jones Accumulate His Wealth? The Rise of the Dallas Cowboy Billionaire Owner

Dallas cowboys

In recent decades, one question has intrigued many: how did Jerry Jones make his money? Born in 1942, Jerry Jones’ financial ascent started with ventures in the oil industry and culminated with the ownership of the Dallas Cowboys, which he purchased in 1989 for $150 million. Today, the team’s value stands at a staggering $8 billion.

Diving deeper into Jones’ financial journey reveals a tale of determination, shrewd investments, and a keen business acumen that turned a young man from Arkansas into one of the most influential figures in the sports world.

Summary of how did jerry jones make his money

Date Event
1942 Jerry Jones is born in Arkansas.
1965 Jones graduates with a business degree from the University of Arkansas.
1969 Establishment of Jones Oil and Land Lease.
1989 Acquisition of the Dallas Cowboys for $150 million.
2021 Forbes estimates Jones’ net worth at $10.4 billion.
2023 Dallas Cowboys’ estimated value stands at $8 billion.

Early Ventures in the Oil Industry

Jerry Jones, after obtaining his business administration degree from the University of Arkansas in 1965, ventured into the oil and gas sector. His company, Jones Oil and Land Lease, not only thrived but also marked Jones’ first million-dollar achievement in the oil realm.

Jones’ success in the oil industry laid the foundation for his future ventures, underscoring the significance of the energy sector in his wealth accumulation.

Expanding Into New Ventures

By the 1980s, Jones began diversifying his portfolio, looking beyond the oil fields. His investments in Comstock Resources, real estate, hospitality management, and even Papa John’s franchises showcased his ability to identify lucrative opportunities across different sectors.

This diversification not only solidified Jones’ position as a successful businessman but also prepared him for one of his most iconic acquisitions.

The Dallas Cowboys Acquisition

1989 was a landmark year for Jones. With $150 million, he acquired the Dallas Cowboys, a team that would later skyrocket in value to $8 billion. This move not only amplified Jones’ wealth but also positioned him prominently in the sporting world.

The acquisition epitomized Jones’ knack for recognizing undervalued assets and turning them into goldmines.

Jerry Jones’ Impact on the NFL

Beyond just ownership, Jones reshaped the NFL’s landscape. His aggressive business strategies and passionate advocacy for team owners have played a pivotal role in molding the NFL’s current business model. Additionally, Jones’ return to the energy sector has been noteworthy, enhancing his influence in both the sporting and business arenas.

Controversies and Public Perception

Jones’ journey, however illustrious, hasn’t been without its share of controversies. From his handling of the Cowboys’ finances to his hands-on approach in daily operations, Jones has faced criticisms. Yet, despite the controversies, he remains a revered figure among Cowboys fans and is celebrated for his successes in the NFL.

Philanthropy and Personal Wealth

Charity and philanthropy are integral to Jones’ persona. With generous donations to numerous causes, he exemplifies the spirit of giving back. As of September 20, 2021, Forbes estimated his net worth at $10.4 billion, a testament to his business prowess and diverse investments.


Jerry Jones’ journey from the plains of Arkansas to the helm of the Dallas Cowboys’ empire is nothing short of remarkable. While the oil industry provided his initial wealth, his vision and relentless pursuit of success turned the Dallas Cowboys into an $8 billion entity. Jerry Jones, with his strategic investments and undeniable passion for football, stands as a beacon of entrepreneurial success in the modern era.


How much did Jerry Jones buy the Dallas Cowboys for?
He purchased the team in 1989 for $150 million.

What was Jerry Jones’ first business?
Jones first ventured into the oil and gas industry with his company, Jones Oil and Land Lease.

How much are the Dallas Cowboys worth today?
As of 2023, the Dallas Cowboys are estimated to be worth $8 billion.

Is Jerry Jones involved in other business ventures besides the NFL?
Yes, Jones has investments in sectors like oil and gas (e.g., Comstock Resources), real estate, hospitality management, and Papa John’s franchises.

Laure Bal

Rédigé par Laure Bal

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