How did Hikaru Nakamura Make his money?

How did Hikaru Nakamura Make his money?

Written by: Emadeldin Teama

Today we are going to talk about one of the best American grandmasters of all time GM Hikaru Nakamura. Hikaru Nakamura net worth is about 50 million dollars. We are going to discuss how did he make this money? And how did he acquire the skill to make money from an early age?

At first , there is something we must mention about Hikaru Nakamura. He was born in Hirakata, Osaka, Japan. His parents are Shuichi Nakamura (Japanese) who worked as a public school teacher and Carolyn Merrow Nakamura (American) who was a a classically trained musician . At the age of four, Hikaru moved with his family from Japan to the USA to get a better life. He learnt to be adapt to every situation quickly from a very young age. He also showed a huge interest in chess and wanted to become a chess champion. At the age of seven he started training serious chess and started achieving titles one by one at a very young age. We are going to mention all his achievements.

In his career life, At the age of 15 years old. He won the title of a grandmaster.he also won the Tata steel group in 2011 which is one of the strongest chess tournaments in the world. According to 2021, his FIDE rating is 2736, and his Peak ranking was No.2 in the world in 2015. He is also a five-time U.S chess champion.

There are multiple resources that made Hikaru Nakamura very rich. First of all through his achievements he gained a decent amount of money by winning many strong tournaments. He also wrote a famous book called Bullet Chess: One Minute to Mate not to mention that he is also earning a decent salary from The USA because he is representing Them in all international and team tournaments. Now let’s dig deeper into his achievements to understand exactly how he earned this amount of money!

At first, in 2003 he achieved the Chess Grandmaster title which is the highest chess title at the age of 15 only. In 2004 he started his career life and achieved for the first time the fourth place in the “B” group at the Corus tournament at Wijk aan Zee. Similarly, In the same year, he qualified for the FIDE World Chess Championship. In the next year 2005, he was selected as a 19th Frank Stamford Chess Fellow and got almost $32,000. That was his first big money. He used this money to complete his education. He studied in Dickinson College with a partial scholarship to take a break from chess a bit. Then he restarted his professional career life. And helped the chess USA team win the bronze medal in the chess Olympiad at Turin

After some years, he won the U.S. Chess Championship in 2009. Even In the Donostia-San Sebastian Chess festival, he played chess and became the 960 world chess champion. In the next year 2010, Hikaru moved back to the United States and continued his career life. He was playing in Bursa for the United States at the World Team Chess Championship. In 2012 he won the third U.S. Championship. After this, he participated in the Reggio Emilia Tournament, where Hikaru won the U.S. Chess Championship. So in 2016, he won the Gibraltar Chess Festival and Zurich chess challenge. So these are the achievements that helped him to make this much money. Currently, he is an American Chess player who earns an annual salary for representing the USA worth of 329644 $ per year!

Currently, Hikaru is very active on social media. He is streaming over twitch his blitz and bullet play and gaining hundreds of thousands of followers. He is also streaming some puzzle challenge and analyzing the top grandmaster games live on spot. he has a great sense of humor that his fans love and an aggressive attacking style. He gains a lot of donations and earns a lot of money through fans gifting him for his beautiful show. He is also active on Facebook and Instagram.

There are also other hidden ways that Hikaru could be earning money from. For example, strong players in the world are known to play second to world challengers or world champions. They earn a lot of money for training with the best and analyzing lines together. There is also the occasional prestigious tournaments that are known to have hundreds of thousands of dollars prizes and mainly focused on promoting chess in the world such as the Sinquefield cup. What we can notice about Hikaru is that he is really flexible and resourceful person. He always sees opportunities to show his skills and market them to the max! he is one of the most famous chess players in the world over social media and his streams are unbelievably popular. He has the mind of a businessman as well as the skill of a chess genius! Here is a video of him beating 22 chess players in 7 minutes!

We would like to finish this article with one of his most famous games against one of the top chess players in the world the French grandmaster Maxime Vachier Lagrave in 2011.

In this game Hikaru had the white pieces.Hikaru was playing in the Tata steel tournament which is one of the strongest chess tournaments in the world.in this tournament , players tend to play for a win in every single round! To get the biggest prize!

Hikaru Nakamura (2751) - Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (2715) [D86]

Tata Steel Group A Wijk aan Zee NED (10), 26.01.2011

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 a classic grunfeld opening. In this opening , black allows white to have a big center in order to get chances of attacking it very hard. There is a lot of theory in the grunfeld that is why a tiny mistake here tend to be fatal for both white or black!

4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Bc4 c5 8.Ne2 Nc6 9.Be3 0–0 10.0–0 Na5 11.Bd3 b6 12.Qd2 both black and white achieved their goals, however white is a little bit a head in development .black should be careful and develop normally with 12..Bb7 and he is okay however, the french grandmaster tried something else!

12..e5?! a surprise moving , breaking the rules of chess as you shouldn’t attack before developing all your pieces.

13.Bg5 Qd7 14.Bh6 Bb7 15.Bxg7 Kxg7 white simplified the position by exchanging dark square bishop, black is not worse here, yet it Is easier for white to find an attacking plan.

16.d5 f5 17.f3 Rf7 18.exf5!? a very surprising move that is actually interesting white is breaking the pawn shelter around black king

18..c4? Very wrong reaction, black should just take the dangerous center pawn with the queen , however it was a hard decision as white would take the pawn on g6 leaving the black king naked!

19.Bc2 gxf5 20.Rad1 white is clearly better here, he has a passed pawn in the center, a safer king and many prospects to attack black king

screenshot of chess game

20..f4 trying to close the position abit however, he can’t!

21.g3! White will break open the position around black king soon

21..Qd6 22.gxf4 exf4 23.Kh1 Re8 24.Rg1+ Kf8 25.Be4! killing black hope to sacrifise any exchange by playing Rxe7 so he would get rid of white passer on d file. White simply stabilized his advantage and black is losing hard now!

25..Bc8 26.Nd4 Qf6 27.Ne6+! the move forward,black is almost forced to lose an exchange here

Bxe6 28.dxe6 Qxe6?? 29.Bd5 Qh3 a ghost threat here, black has only the lonely queen to attack, she can’t do much as there aren’t any other black pieces helping her and the knight on the edge of the board is doing nothing

30.Bxf7 Qxf3+ 31.Rg2 Kxf7 32.Qd7+ Kf6 33.Qg7+[1–0 Black resigns.]

Here is a link to the game :

From the last game , we Conclude that hikaru has a brilliant talent in chess. However, the most interesting thing about him is that he used his talent to earn a fortune from a simple sport! I believe that every single person on the planet has at least one talent in one field. The best thing to do is to take the approach of Hikaru in life, try to get the best out of your talent, work hard on it and never give up!

We also recommend for the reader to understand economics and money much more. It is something they don’t teach you about in schools. The Famous rich dad poor dad book is an excellent place to start.Always stay positive and keep trying!