The Jackson estate has earned more than $250 million since the King of Pop died June 25, 2009. Sony Music told the Associated Press that more than 31 million Jackson albums have sold worldwide since he died, a stratospheric number for a music industry in decline.
With 8.3 million albums sold in North America, he was the top-selling artist in 2009, easily topping Taylor Swift’s 4.6 million. It marked the most albums sold in a year since Usher topped 8 million in 2004, Nielsen SoundScan to the Associated Press.
Nielsen also reported that since the start of this year, Jackson songs have been played on the radio in the U.S. and Canada 140,000 times, about 10 times the pace before he died. Nearly a million Jackson albums have sold this year and a new album of unreleased material is set to hit stores in November, roughly in tandem with a new video game in which fans can mimic his signature moves.
Jackson reportedly was more than $500 million in debt when he died.