If you ever wondered how lucrative is the manga and anime business, we might be able to give some insight into the topic. Even though the manga writers are mostly pretty private about how much they are making, and so this list shows the approximate amount in overall net worth. The manga business is most popular in Japan, where it initially started.
It sounds like a dream job to be working as a manga writer, but because there’s a lot of interest in this field it’s hard to reach the top instantly. There’s a lot of work and dedication that goes into the job, and if someone were to pursue this career, the path ahead will not be easy. With that said, let’s take a look at the 15 richest manga writers.
15. Yasuhisa Hara (Kingdom) – Net Worth: $10 million
The highly popular Seinen manga written by Yasuhisa Hara, Kingdom, is regarded as a classic. Over the years the manga garnered many fans, mostly between the ages of 24 and 30. Interestingly enough, he is the only one among his popular peers who don’t have a license from an English outlet. The manga sold over 90 million copies, which made it one of the best-selling series.
14. Kohei Horikoshi (My Hero Academia) – Net Worth: $10 million
On a more recent note, Kohei Horikoshi, the writer of the My Hero Academia series had a really impressive growth in popularity. This series was an instant bestseller and one of Horikoshi’s most popular works. It is no surprise that he enjoys the shonen genre, some of his favorite manga series are Dragon Ball, One Piece, and Naruto. My Hero Academia was the fifth best-selling manga of 2020, over three million copies sold.
13. Gege Akutami (Jujutsu Kaisen) – Net Worth: $12 million
Another recent manga series that has gotten a lot of attention since it came out. The series by Gege Akutami has gotten a lot of praise and over the years managed to create a large fanbase. Akutami’s favorite manga series, and what ultimately inspired him to write Jujutsu Kaisen was Bleach written by Tite Kubo, who is on this list as well.
12. Hirohiko Araki (Jojo’s Bizzare Adventures) – Net Worth: $13 million
Jojo’s Bizzare Adventures has been around for over two decades now, and it is still active and going strong. Acquiring many fans over the time it has been out, and even more so with the anime adaptation being released. Hirohiko Araki is known for his very specific drawing style, he is very distinct in creating his characters. This is of course only one of the appealing elements of the series, which ultimately made Araki one of the richest manga writers of all time.
11. Osamu Akimoto (KochiKame: Tokyo Beat Cops) – Net Worth: $15 million
Osamu Akimoto is a famous Japanese manga writer, who won the Guinness World Record for „Most volumes published for a single manga series“. He is very well known in Japan, but maybe not so much in the west. If you are reading his name for the first time, you should know that his series has been coming out since 1976 up until 2016. Not only did his series win a Guinness World Record but, after selling an incredible 155 million copies of the manga it became one of the most popular manga series in history.
10. Hiromu Arakawa (Fullmetal Alchemist) – Net Worth: $20 million
With over 80 million volumes sold globally, Hiromu Arakawa is one of the most well-known manga artists today. Some of her other notable works are The Heroic Legend of Arslan and Silver Spoon. The manga series was just the beginning for Arakawa, since its release, there has been an anime, video game, and movie adaptation and of course, a range of merchandise that fans all over the world have been collecting.
9. Yoshihiro Togashi (Hunter x Hunter) – Net Worth: $25 million
The shounen genre has some of the greatest manga writers of all time, and Yoshihiro is most definitely one of them. His most popular manga series is Hunter x Hunter, but he also wrote another series that became really successful called Yu Yu Hakusho. When we compare the two, Hunter x Hunter does surpass Yu Yu Hakusho in sales but even still it is quite an impressive collection of notable works. Even though the Yu Yu Hakusho series has come to an end, Hunter x Hunter is still ongoing which is great news if you’re starting to look into his manga series.
8. Masashi Kishimoto (Naruto) – Net Worth: $27 million
Even if you are not an avid anime or manga follower, you still might’ve heard of the iconic manga series, Naruto. With the protagonist of the same name, who has won the hearts of millions of fans all over the world, it is not surprising why the author of this series is on this list. With over 250 million copies sold globally, it became of the most popular manga series of all time.
7. Hajime Isayama (Attack on Titan) – Net Worth: $50 million
It’s incredible how so many great manga authors can get rejected by big companies, and Hajime Isayama was one of them. He started his Attack on Titan series back in 2005, and after submitting it to Weekly Shonen Jump he was rejected. His luck changed after he applied the manga to Kodansha, and everything went off from there. Now he is one of the best-selling manga authors today and his work has won many different awards like the Harvey Award and the Kodansha Manga Award.
6. Gosho Aoyama (Detective Conan) – Net Worth: $50 million
Gosho Aoyama is the mind behind the Detective Conan manga series, which has earned him a place among all of these well-known manga artists. Impressively, this manga series has grown to a thousand chapters and episodes of the anime adaptation. Not many authors are able to do this, and not so many anime adaptations can grow to that many episodes. Detective Conan or also known as Case Closed has sold over 250 million copies worldwide.
5. Tite Kubo (Bleach) – Net Worth: $55 million
Bleach is one of the most popular shounen anime to date, and the writer behind this amazing series is Tite Kubo. His drawing style and how he handles fight scenes can be best seen in the manga series. Another category he excels at is attention to detail and his character design. If you are a fan of body horror you will definitely enjoy this series, because the way Kubo manages to incorporate these elements in his characters is truly amazing.
4. Akira Toriyama (Dragon Ball) – Net Worth: $60 million
As you might’ve guessed now that we are reaching the top of the list, the iconic manga series Dragon Ball was going to be up here with its author. Akira Toriyama’s series was groundbreaking for many reasons, but the main one is the breaking of the mold for anime and manga in the West. This was one of the first series that was accepted by the worldwide stage and calling Toriyama the „Godfather“ of the manga industry is completely accurate.
3. Koyoharu Gotouge (Demon Slayer) – Net Worth: $60 million
Another one of the more recent manga series that has become a mega-hit series, written by Koyoharu Gotouge. The Demon Slayer series was released in 2016, making its debut at the Jump Treasure Newcomer Manga Awards. Since its release the series has become very popular in the international scene as well, selling over 150 million copies. The band that was created around the Demon Slayer series is one of the highest-grossing media franchises ever, and in 2020 it made almost nine billion dollars in revenue.
2. Rumiko Takahashi (Inuyasha) – Net Worth: $70 million
We are nearing the end of this list and our next writer is Rumiko Takahashi, who is probably most known for her Inuyasha manga series. She is by far one of the wealthiest manga writers in Japan. She started her career back in 1978 and since then her work has amassed a huge following over the years. Her work was also recognized by the Japanese government in 2020, after which they awarded her the Medal with Purple Ribbon.
1. Eiichiro Oda (One Piece) – Net Worth: $200 million
This might not come as a surprise, but here we are at the end of this list, and in the first place the wealthiest manga writer is none other than Eiichiro Oda. His manga series One Piece is one of the most well-known anime and manga series. After its release in 1997, we can definitely say that it changed the course of the industry as a whole. Even after two decades it still holds the best-selling title with more than five hundred million copies have been sold worldwide.