Jessica Simpson's empire: $750M and counting
February 16th, 2011
11:08 AM ET

Jessica Simpson's empire: $750M and counting

While everyone else was trying to get the goods on Jessica Simpson's dress size, the 30-year-old star was steadily building a profitable fashion line of her own.

According to New York magazine, Simpson took in around $750 million in sales last year for her wide array of fashion merchandise, which includes shoes, dresses, denim and coats.

Add in a career separates line and a full ready-to-wear collection, which she plans to offer this year, and that total is expected to grow past the $1 billion mark. Last December, she was crowned "fashion's billion dollar baby" by industry publication Women's Wear Daily.

To give the number some context, New York says, that means Simpson’s nearly playing in the same sales league as Michael Kors – a reality that takes the 30-year-old by surprise.

“I never thought I’d be some fashion mogul!” she told the magazine, and maybe that's because she aimed to keep things simple.

“We try not to set trends, but you need your trending pieces in every delivery. But those go fast: What you really need is your basics for every type of person," Simpson explained. "When it comes to other celebrity brands, I think a lot of people do a great job, but it can’t be all about them. Everybody doesn’t want to just look like the celebrity, because they can’t. They just want one element of that style.”

Plus, her stuff is pretty affordable. Simpson's contemporary sportswear line that's due out this fall, for example, is expected to have a price range of $39 to $129.

"A girl could go to the shopping mall with her mother and she’d have a great new outfit and still have some money left for lunch at McDonald’s," her business manager David Levin told New York of the collection's concept. "She can look like Jessica Simpson, smell like Jessica Simpson, and she can afford it.”

Filed under: Celebrities

soundoff (99 Responses)
  1. Chubby Chaser

    Some people need to check their spelling.

    February 17, 2011 at 8:42 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Superhiro

    Everytime one of these stories come up, I see a bunch of people saying things like "Oh well she's laughing all the way to the bank, gotta respect that." No you don't have to respect that. What's to respect? That she made too much money selling crap? That's not admirable.

    February 17, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Meh

    Woot for crappy clothing made in Mexico or Korea by the lowest bidders

    February 17, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Cheaterville

    If you like Jessica Simpson then I bet you were disapointed to hear about Nick Lachey's infidelity! just launched on Valentines Day! Post about a cheater anonymously for free! Register your name and anyone you know to get e-mail notifications anytime a member makes a post about any name on your list for free! Don't be the last to know!

    February 17, 2011 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Michele

    This is a SERIOUS question. Exactly WHO is this woman? WHY is she famous? I really mean this. It seems like a while ago she just suddenly started to show up in magazines and tabloids. Has she ever actually DONE anything to warrant being famous, or is she just another blond bimbo from reality TV?

    February 17, 2011 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
  6. MizMc

    It doesn't matter if she's hot, fat, or crazy... this woman is laughing all the way to the bank. Gotta respect that. Moreover, at least you don't read about her every week in the same light as Lindsay Lohan, Miley Cyrus, Paris Hilton, or any of the other ninny-hammers out there. Fair is fair.

    February 17, 2011 at 11:02 am | Report abuse |
  7. crystal

    Jessica Simpson is no Fashion Mogul. She is a fake and a phony. Fashion moguls are Versace, Michael Kors, Gucci, Loui Vuitton, Tommy HIlfiger, Ralph Lauren, These are all designers. Jessica Simpson is no designer. She just sold her name, that is all. She is not worth 1 billion dollars, she just gets a percentage. The company she sold her name to for `15 million dollars is worth 750 million. Not Jessica Simpson. These cookie cutter reporters need to do their homework. Jessica is so fake. She tells the world she loves her fat body, and then has all of her magazine covers photoshopped, like the new york magazine shots. I will never buy any products from that fat phoney.

    February 17, 2011 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
  8. Arna

    I love Jess, I think she is a sweet girl....keep it real Jess and life will be always be wonderful ....especially with this success!

    February 17, 2011 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  9. Jessica Simpsons Cabbage Hole

    "She can look like Jessica Simpson, smell like Jessica Simpson, and she can afford it.”

    Well I dont know if I wanna sell like her.

    February 17, 2011 at 10:15 am | Report abuse |
  10. Cindyb62

    Well I love her shoes, I have purchased 5 pairs so far. So she must be doing something right for me to buy her product, because I only go for designer things. You did good Jessica, keep it up!

    February 17, 2011 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
  11. skidmark

    i would like to do Jessica in the butt, and then pull out and give her a dirty sanchez with the tip of my rod! Jackpot!

    February 17, 2011 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |
  12. Radio Broadcaster

    Folks..remember one thing Jessica doesnt design alone. She has lots of help. Probably 99 percent!

    February 17, 2011 at 9:06 am | Report abuse |
  13. theyrephonies

    Sad world we live in when we put talent-less, hollywood-made "entertainers" on a pedestal
    expecting the world to look up to and emulate them......

    February 17, 2011 at 9:01 am | Report abuse |
  14. Paul

    I love her style go jes!

    February 17, 2011 at 9:00 am | Report abuse |
  15. fartlicker

    seriously, tomic couldn't manage a freaking garage sale..what an idiot

    February 17, 2011 at 8:51 am | Report abuse |
  16. fartlicker

    you'd better hope she doesn't cash her profit check before you get done shopping and beat you to mickey d' will have to wait for delivery truck to bring more food.

    February 17, 2011 at 8:50 am | Report abuse |
  17. fartlicker

    after you buy your can head to an open field and graze!!

    February 17, 2011 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
  18. Bryan Rewers

    Haha so Jessica simpson budgeted mcdonalds into her clothes purchase haha her fat face tells it all, way to jump ship early nick money isn't worth the pounds

    February 17, 2011 at 7:28 am | Report abuse |
  19. what

    She should fire her publicist he is an idiot,since is already idiot,she needs someone with a brain.

    February 17, 2011 at 7:26 am | Report abuse |
  20. Robin

    Guess you can call her what you want but at the end of the day, she's doing better than you, huh! Whose got the last laugh.

    February 17, 2011 at 7:10 am | Report abuse |
  21. Wow, you go girl.

    I thought I had it made with a salary of $230,000 a year, this woman has single handedly rocked the fashion world. Poor Nick Lachey, I bet he's pooping his pants right about now...LOL

    February 17, 2011 at 5:47 am | Report abuse |
  22. Florence Pittsfield Ma

    Ok ppl, Jessica is not fat by any means and I'm certain everyones boyfriends would leave u for her in a flash. She may play a dumb blonde and we laugh at her, but the only one whose laughing is Jess, laughing all the way to the bank. BTW, he shoe line is fab!!! I own a bunch of pairs 🙂

    February 17, 2011 at 4:26 am | Report abuse |
  23. colleenarn

    Jessica you can let them laugh @ your all they want......just laugh @ them back alllllllllllll the way to the bank.

    February 17, 2011 at 3:38 am | Report abuse |
  24. aaron yox

    Obama should go after Jessica Simpson with that money she can get us out of the nations debt

    February 17, 2011 at 2:51 am | Report abuse |
  25. Richard Allen

    she sees hateful comments and cries a little...but her tissues made out of $100 bills do a great job. Jessica 1 Haters 0

    February 17, 2011 at 2:26 am | Report abuse |
  26. doreen

    um....i love your shoes, that is all 🙂

    February 17, 2011 at 2:15 am | Report abuse |
  27. ayne

    This world is so unfair. If I didn't have kids I'd make a quiet exit off.

    February 17, 2011 at 1:44 am | Report abuse |
  28. melizza

    Bet Nick is kicking himself in the @$$ now LOL, you go gurl

    February 17, 2011 at 1:25 am | Report abuse |
  29. Jaredkillah

    Someone kill me.

    February 17, 2011 at 12:58 am | Report abuse |
  30. Kass

    Shes not fat anymore.a healthy size 5again..

    February 17, 2011 at 12:57 am | Report abuse |
  31. shep

    Im 33 and love her clothes and shoes... thanks jessica i respect her she has been through alot and still standin god bless

    February 17, 2011 at 12:41 am | Report abuse |
  32. devara

    Pretty good haul for a girl who usually looks like 9 miles of bad road.

    February 17, 2011 at 12:40 am | Report abuse |
  33. pat

    5% of a billion dollars is still 50 million dollars, not too shabby!

    February 16, 2011 at 11:47 pm | Report abuse |
  34. joeybagodonuts

    I'd do her

    February 16, 2011 at 11:47 pm | Report abuse |
  35. masters in education

    Would that be a community collage or an online collage?...good luck with your appeal. Anyone up for spelling lessons? Maybe Ms Simpson can start an online tutorial business.

    February 16, 2011 at 11:33 pm | Report abuse |
  36. Chubby Chaser

    hey tally you forgot a one in front of that 4

    February 16, 2011 at 11:10 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Chubby Chaser


    February 16, 2011 at 11:08 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Paul D

    Would have been an even larger sales figure if her optical line were sold to retailers online! What's up with that?

    February 16, 2011 at 10:36 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Junior T

    Not bad for a fat chick !

    February 16, 2011 at 10:20 pm | Report abuse |
  40. That Guy

    And people think Jessica Simpson is stupid. Where are their billion dollar fashion empires or their movie roles, singing careers, and ads on TV?

    February 16, 2011 at 9:53 pm | Report abuse |
  41. MajorLoser

    I saw some of her stuff at a store. Do they come in womens sizes?

    February 16, 2011 at 9:37 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Chessy Harris

    Just wondering if she would like to share a little of that money. I could use about $63,000 to pay off bills and some students loans so my husband could go back to collage and get his Masters in Education. My address is
    10329 Mayo Trail
    Catlettsburg, KY 41129
    Or if any one else would like to help it would be greatly appreciated

    February 16, 2011 at 9:22 pm | Report abuse |
  43. jeff

    Best looking fat girl ever !!!!

    February 16, 2011 at 8:59 pm | Report abuse |
  44. Tally

    And just to clarify before the attacks start, I have 3 kids and am a size 4. I have image issues. I am educated, have a good job and own a home. I do not live in my mother's basement and I have a life. I just have a guilty pleasure in celebrity gossip and celebrity blogs. 🙂

    February 16, 2011 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nicole

      Did you really have to state your size? Way to back up a point. Hope you don't have any girls to teach self loathing to.

      February 16, 2011 at 8:59 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Tally

    She's actually quite a lovely person with a genuine heart. More that can be said about a good majority of the population. She's still very pretty and fashionable and anyone who says other wise must have body image issues of their own. She's not obese or even fat. She is healthy. She doesn't want to give a sickly image. What's wrong with that?

    February 16, 2011 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Talented Mr. Romo

    Boy I can't wait to see her next reality show, cash for Hummers, she's quite the humanitarian.

    February 16, 2011 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
  47. bart

    dont be mean to my sister. she is super nice. at least she doesnt play that aggravating saxhone like Lisa. Our dad Homer says he wont share his beer with you if you arevnean to us. BTW barnie gumble says hey.I

    February 16, 2011 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Talented Mr. Romo

    Boy I can't wait for her next reality show, Cash for Hummers. She's such an humanitarian.

    February 16, 2011 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Carnival Freak

    Too bad all that money is going to China, Pakistan, Ecuador, Belize or Vietnamese slave labor and doing nothing for the unemployed here in the states.

    February 16, 2011 at 7:20 pm | Report abuse |
  50. spear

    Way to go Jessica. Sure she may be a little more plump than she used to be, but she still looks amazing. Growing a fashion business that big takes some skill and hard work. She is not as dumb as people always say she is, and she is proving that by growing a huge fashion empire.

    February 16, 2011 at 6:40 pm | Report abuse |
  51. Mason

    Dang Jessica, let me have like...5 Million bucks. You wont even notice its gone.

    February 16, 2011 at 6:30 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Jayson

    Jessica Simpson seems to appeal to the "Wal-Mart crowd."

    February 16, 2011 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
  53. Fanny

    I had no clue that O.J.'S daughter was this artistic and savy...does she have a mens glove line?

    February 16, 2011 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
  54. WeirdMN

    Fat chicks need clothes too. Jessica sells her clothing by the acre, so that's why she's making so much $$$.

    February 16, 2011 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
  55. erie

    if u buy an outfit by her than go to mcdonalds ?? this is a clear statement why are economy if mest up ...

    February 16, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  56. erie

    and still have lunch at mcdonalds ???!!!! what a greedy woman

    February 16, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
  57. SugarLips

    Smart girl!!!...I believe one day my empire will reach the billion dollar mark!!

    February 16, 2011 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
  58. tommy

    Wow! They can still have money left for McDonald's, because McDonald's is so expensive right? I like Jessica and her clothing but that has to be the worst analogy I've ever heard in my life.

    February 16, 2011 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  59. John Doherty

    I think she's awesome, investing her money to make more money, she's smart. Just think at all the celebrities that had the same chance and blew it.

    February 16, 2011 at 4:40 pm | Report abuse |
  60. Guest

    Keep eating at McDonalds and you will look and smell like her.

    February 16, 2011 at 4:39 pm | Report abuse |
  61. Sapsxy

    Never really under stood the "american people's obession" with making rich people-more rich.Nothing wrong with purchasing "needy,affordable stuff" but to get caught up in" hysterical" atmosphere of the "trend"-I suppose is the
    "American thing".

    February 16, 2011 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
  62. Cogirl

    She better be smart enough to get a pre-nup before she marries this new guy.

    February 16, 2011 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
  63. mosbygrl

    i think jennifer is doing a good job. people for some reason like to take shots at her for whatever reason and why. But you know at the end of the day her bank account has millions. what does your have.......take that anyway you like.

    February 16, 2011 at 4:14 pm | Report abuse |
  64. Judy Rowe

    Make that Kudos to Jessica!!

    February 16, 2011 at 4:08 pm | Report abuse |
  65. Judy Rowe

    Cudos to Jessica! You go girl!!

    February 16, 2011 at 4:07 pm | Report abuse |
  66. RS

    This makes me sick! But still, awesome for a lil' blond bimbo moron (Romo is hatin it!). Some might say, "crazy like a fox"...I say "Dumb and LUCKY". I'm sure after all her "people" & the IRS got their share she still made $150 MILL-ION! DOLLARS!

    I'm shocked as I thought her career was over. As a native Southerner, don't discount the power of tweens shopping at Wal-Mart. And that last bit about McDonald's was a typical NE New Yorker "jab" at the so-called "ingnorant South". Jess, you did get the last laugh after. As someone who greatly discounted you, bravo!

    February 16, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  67. Beautiful Vixen


    February 16, 2011 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
  68. Rupert

    Before we crown her queen, remember this is gross sales, not profit. With maybe a margin of 5% on a good year and other investors to pay off, she's no billionaire by a long shot.

    That being said, she could at least put that money towards a trainer. Remember when she was hot?

    February 16, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • BigDougGotalotta

      Prob clears closer to 12-15%, but even if she was missing the target margin and only pulled 5%, she's still turning just shy of 19 MILLION bucks (if she hits 12%, it'd be close to 45 million) before she's thirty. Pretty damn impressive. I don't question that she's not the smartest person in the room sometimes, but she's smart enough to know something that's worth 18 some-odd million more than I. Unless Mr. Buffett( Warren or Jimmy) or the like decide to pop a comment here on CNN, she knows "something" most of us would do well to learn.

      February 16, 2011 at 4:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Yo

      The only thing she "knows" is her celebrity status. It doesn't take much intellectual ability to use that fact and hire ppl to use your name and profit from it.

      February 16, 2011 at 9:23 pm | Report abuse |

    I just farted. Shooooo : )

    February 16, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  70. hmm

    Regardless if she is lacking on the teeth hygiene front and if she is more scurvy these days, she is laughing all the way to the bank. She's one of the few celebrities that has actually done something productive with herself and added value to the economy.

    February 16, 2011 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
  71. AJ

    Way to go, Jessica! Keep going, going and going!

    February 16, 2011 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
  72. Kelley

    All this from someone who admits she doesn't brush her teeth ... yuck!!

    February 16, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  73. Dude415

    “She can look like Jessica Simpson, smell like Jessica Simpson, and eat tons of McDonald's like Jessica Simpson"

    February 16, 2011 at 3:01 pm | Report abuse |
  74. red neck

    thats great! now she can get those wheels off her trailer and set it up on blocks. who knows maybe she can even put a plywood skirt around the go girl!

    February 16, 2011 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
  75. Diana

    Ending this article with "and still have some money left for lunch at McDonald’s" kind of ruined it for me... but good for Jess. She's so garsh darn cute. I have a dress by her and some shoes that I love!

    February 16, 2011 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
  76. Tiffany H

    @Timme62 what a jerk. The fact of the matter is Jessica is hot. She looks better than 90% of the population and 90% of all men would love to have a change at her.

    February 16, 2011 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dude415

      @Tiffany H "She looks better than 90% of the population and 90% of all men would love to have a change at her."

      1)90% population of witch country?
      2)90% of all men living IN YOUR house.. Right?

      February 16, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |

      Who knew she'd create an empire. I say 'you go girl'. And donate...donate...donate.

      February 16, 2011 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Timme62

      Well sweetheart have at her. Personal opinion is just that personal.

      February 17, 2011 at 8:12 am | Report abuse |
  77. Timme62

    If someone buys Simpsons clothing and then goes to McDonalds afterwards, I guess that yes they too will look like Simpson.

    February 16, 2011 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  78. Terrie

    She is kinda trampy in my opinion. I heard she is dating Millhouse.

    February 16, 2011 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  79. Blythe

    I'm certain OJ Simpson did it.

    February 16, 2011 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  80. Manley

    Her brother Bart really is the talent of the family. He is a very tallented young actor and comedian. Looking forward to see him in more leading roles.

    February 16, 2011 at 12:15 pm | Report abuse |
  81. Nancy

    Everyone brags on the Jackson family and how wonderful they are. Michael and Janet Jackson are nobodys compared to ths SImpsons. Homer. Marge, Bart, Maggie, Jessica, Lisa, and Ashley bare AWESOME !

    February 16, 2011 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  82. JOSE'

    Her brother Bart is soooo funny ! Plus that Homer SImpson ! Her dad Homer is my hero ! He is THE BEST !

    February 16, 2011 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |
  83. Yummy


    February 16, 2011 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |

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