John Cena is one of the most successful professional wrestlers of all time. In this guide, you'll learn about his career, how he's made money, and how to build a net worth that's fit for a champion.

John Cena headed out to California with only a dream and $500. But his sheer determination and countless hours in the gym would soon pay off in a big way. Today, he's one of the most successful WWE wrestlers ever to enter the ring. His self-made story proves that anyone—even YOU—can go from complete unknown to world champion with the right mindset, training, and hard work.

Discover how John Cena's signature moves in the ring made him one of the highest-paid wrestlers to date.

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John Cena Net Worth:$80 million
Real Name:John Felix Anthony Cena
Date of Birth:April 23, 1977
Birthplace:West Newbury, Massachusetts, USA
Height:6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Source of Wealth:Professional Wrestler & Actor
Best-Known For:WrestleMania, WWE Raw, & WWE Smackdown!

What is John Cena's net worth?

John Cena's net worth for 2023 is estimated at $80 million. He's currently the second-highest-paid WWE performer.

This shark has a net worth of $300 million!

Who is John Cena?

On April 23, 1977, Carol and John Joseph Cena welcomed their second of five sons, John Felix Anthony Cena, into the world. And from the moment he was born, wrestling became an essential part of young John's life. His father was a ring announcer, lending his voice to Chaotic Wrestling, an independent wrestling organization.

Growing up, John Cena loved wrestling. He even crafted cardboard championship belts, not realizing he would wear the real thing one day. But like so many other kids, Cena endured relentless bullying. And after one too many lost schoolyard fights, he asked his parents for a weightlifting bench.

Cena attended Springfield College in Massachusetts, earning a degree in exercise physiology. After graduating, he decided to become a professional bodybuilder. But bodybuilding didn't pay the bills initially. He took part-time jobs as a limo driver and at a local Gold's Gym to make ends meet. His starting salary? A measly $6 per hour.

However, Cena always looked on the bright side. He said, "In the beginning, I was living out of the back of my Lincoln Continental. I was struggling, but I wasn't ever sad."

Entering the Wrestling Ring

In 1998, Cena moved to California with only $500 in his pocket, hoping to follow in Hulk Hogan's footsteps. He trained at Ultimate Pro Wrestling's Ultimate University and competed in matches at local flea markets.

Cena made his first World Wrestling Federation (WWF) debut in 2000. His character, The Prototype, lost in a match against Mikey Richardson. But the WWF invited him back on SmackDown! in 2001. Cena defeated Aaron Aguilera and signed a contract with the WWF.

In 2002, Cena adopted a new persona, The Doctor of Thuganomics. That same year, the WWF changed its name to World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). Cena's popularity as a wrestler skyrocketed. He competed in countless championship matches, finally trading in his childhood cardboard belt for a genuine gold-plated, gem-encrusted championship belt.

Now more than two decades later, Cena continues wrestling for the WWE. And his rise to fame doesn't end there. John Cena is also an accomplished actor, award-winning author, and Billboard-charting musician.

How much does a WWE wrestler make?

The average salary for the WWE's main wrestler roster is $500,000. But the most popular performers earn much more. Here's an annual paycheck breakdown of the top WWE wrestlers for 2023:

  • Brock Lesnar: $12 million
  • John Cena: $8.5 million
  • Roman Reigns: $5 million
  • Randy Orton: $4 million
  • Triple H: $3.6 million

What are the sources of John Cena's income?

John Cena became famous for ruthlessly taking down opponents using his signature move, the Attitude Adjustment. But this wrestler also earns money outside the ring. Here's how he pads his bank account:

1. Professional Wrestling Career

How much does John Cena make a year? Cena is one of WWE's top-paid wrestlers, bringing home an $8.5 million base salary annually.

2. Merchandise Sales

Licensed John Cena merchandise flies off the shelves. His merch earned the WWE Shop a cool $2.6 million in 2021. And Cena gets five percent royalties on all sales.

3. Endorsements

John Cena is no stranger to brand deals. He makes a reported $1.5 million per sponsorship. His more notable endorsements include:

  • Capri Sun
  • Experian
  • Gillette
  • Gold's Gym
  • Hefty
  • Honda
  • Subway
  • YJ Stinger

4. Acting Career

John Cena is one of the most successful actors in the WWE. He earned $500,000 for the first season of Peacemaker, making him the highest-paid cast member. Cena also pocketed $2.5 million for 2015's Trainwreck.

Some of his movie highlights include:

  • The Suicide Squad (2021)
  • Vacation Friends (2021)
  • Dolittle (2020)
  • Ferdinand (2017)
  • The Marine (2006)

Which WWE star makes more money on the big screen? Dwayne Johnson—aka The Rock—commands $20 per million per role!

5. Cocktail Brand

In 2022, Cena became a co-founding partner for Thomas Ashbourne Craft Spirits. Other celebrities involved with the brand include Sarah Jessica Parker, Rosario Dawson, Playboi Carti, and Vanessa Hudgens.

This real estate investor had to build his empire twice!

6. WWE Appearances

Cena earns a salary bonus for every wrestling appearance. Each WWE Premium Live Event adds $500K to his wallet.

7. Music Career

John Cena is a Gold Certified musician. His rap album, You Can't See Me, debuted at No. 15 on the Billboard 200. He once said, "Whenever I have some time away from the ring, you'll find me in the [recording] studio."

8. Social Media

As a highly influential WWE wrestler, Cena earns upwards of $60K per sponsored Instagram post. John Cena's Instagram has 18.5 million followers.

9. Writing Books

John Cena is a perfect blend of brawn and brains. He is a #1 New York Times bestselling author. His award-winning publications include Elbow Grease and Do Your Best Every Day to Do Your Best Every Day.

Meet another entrepreneur who is also a best-selling author.


Can you deadlift these John Cena FAQs?

How did John Cena become a wrestler?

Cena grew up watching professional wrestling and saw his dad serve as a ring announcer. Wanting to be like his childhood idol, Hulk Hogan, Cena moved to California and signed up for wrestling classes. His impressive skills caught the eye of local wrestling scouts, who recruited Cena for the WWE's training league.

What championships has John Cena won?

John Cena is a 16-time world champion, with 13 WWE Champion titles and three World Heavyweight Champion titles. He shares the record for most championship wins with Ric Flair.

Other titles include:

  • Five-time WWE United States Champion
  • Two-time WWE Tag Team Champion
  • Two-time Royal Rumble Champion

What is John Cena's net worth?

He makes millions as a wrestler, actor, and author, but just how much is John Cena worth? As of 2023, the estimated net worth of John Cena is a jaw-dropping $80 million.

Here's how John Cena's net worth has grown over the years:

  • John Cena net worth 2022: $75 million
  • John Cena net worth 2021: $60 million
  • John Cena net worth 2020: $55 million

This entrepreneur has a net worth of $62.5 billion and growing!

What bodybuilding feats has John Cena achieved?

Weighing in at 251 pounds, John Cena has an impressive powerlifting total. Here are some of his recorded feats:

  • Bench press: 487 lbs.
  • Squat: 611 lbs.
  • Deadlift: 352 lbs.

What other ventures has John Cena been involved in?

Following in the footsteps of other celebrities, Cena co-founded Thomas Ashbourne, a premixed cocktail brand. The company launched in 2022.

Which Thomas Ashbourne cocktail bears Cena's name? The Classic Old Fashioned. And fans love it. As one review stated, "I can't get over the fact that John Cena has his own Old Fashioned. It's amazing."

How has John Cena used his fame to make a difference?

John Cena is a huge supporter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. In 2022, he set a Guinness World Record for the most wishes granted with 650. And he doesn't plan on stopping any time soon.

What endorsements has John Cena received?

Brands can't get enough of John Cena. He has signed countless endorsement deals over the years. Hefty—the garbage bag manufacturer—offered the wrestler a multimillion-dollar contract to be the brand's spokesperson. He's also been a brand ambassador for Tapout Body Sprays, Cricket Wireless, and Crocs.

How has John Cena's wrestling career changed since his debut?

When Cena entered the ring for the first time, he played a generic role. And over the years, his in-ring characters went through several iterations, from a robotic wrestler to a hip-hop persona. Today, Cena describes his persona as one that symbolizes heroism and hope.


John Cena discovered his passion for wrestling at a young age. From making $6 an hour to living out of his car, he did everything possible to make his dream a reality. Today, he's one of the most decorated performers in WWE history. But he doesn't take his wins for granted. Cena also uses his fame and wealth to give back to the community. He's a true winner—both in and out of the ring.

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