British gamer Daniel ‘The Diamond Minecart’ Middleton – DanTDM for short – is the highest-paid YouTube star according to Forbes magazine’s annual online-video rich-list roundup.
Forbes estimates that Middleton earned $16.5m before management fees and taxes between 1 June 2016 and 1 June 2017, although note that word ‘estimates’ – this is not an official figure for his earnings.
(If you want official figures, according to Companies House in the UK, his TheDiamondMinecart Ltd company ended August 2015 with £4.3m of cash in the bank, and a year later had £13m. It hasn’t published figures for the year to the end of August 2017 yet, which would be more of a match for the period covered by Forbes.)
Middleton has built a fervent fanbase, with 16.9 million subscribers to his main YouTube channel, as well as 2.7 million Instagram followers and 1.2 million Twitter followers. He published his first book in October 2016, and his live show has proved a hot ticket, as well as spawning an official DVD.
Gamers are prominent in the Forbes top-ten list: Middleton is joined by Evan ‘VanossGaming’ Fong ($15.5m according to the magazine’s analysis); Dude Perfect ($14m); Mark ‘Markiplier’ Fischbach and Logan Paul (both $11.5m); Felix ‘PewDiePie’ Kjellberg ($12m); Jake Paul ($11.5m); Ryan’s Toys Review and Smosh (both $11m); Lilly Singh ($10.5m).
That’s a cool $127m of estimated annual earnings for the top 10 YouTubers, up 80% from the comparative figure from 2016’s YouTube rich-list published by the magazine. The estimates cover ad revenues as well as brand partnerships, merchandise, book deals tours and other income streams.