QUICK ANSWER: Ryan Kaji is the highest earning YouTuber in the world. From YouTube alone, he earned $22 million in 2018, and $26 million in 2019. He also has partnerships, merchandise, and sponsorship income which could potentially be much larger. It’s estimated Ryan Kaji’s net worth is around $100 million. He is just eight years old.
Ryan Kaji is the child star of Ryan’s World, a YouTube channel. Ryan, who is just eight years old as of May 2020, appears in videos with his mother and father, as well as his twin sisters. The family’s real-life surname is Guan, but they use the on-screen name Kaji in an effort to maintain some sense of privacy.
Ryan started his YouTube career in 2015 with a channel called Ryan Toys Review, in which he would open and review toys. The family started the channel after watching similar toy review videos – but Ryan’s videos soon took off. One of his most watched videos, called “Huge Eggs Surprise Toys Challenge,” has accumulated 1.9 billion views.
The channel is now one the top 100 most-subscribed YouTube channels.
So what exactly does that translate to in terms of money? We’ve broken down some numbers for you.
Ryan Kaji’s YouTube Ad Revenue
For the first two years of the channel, Kaji’s earnings came exclusively from YouTube advertising revenue.
The original Ryan’s Toys Review channel still brings in the majority of their income.
Ryan Toys Review earned $22 million on YouTube in 2018 – that’s up from the $11 million that the channel made between 2016 and 2017. This puts Ryan Kaji in #1 place on the list of the highest-paid YouTube stars of the year. In 2019, it’s estimated Kaji’s earnings rose to $26 million as the young star matured into more engaging experiences (he now conducts science experiments, among other things) plus released a number of exclusive toys and products connected to his channels. To put into context, this is an eight year old who makes over $2 million every month.
Over time, the family has added a number of additional channels, including Ryan’s World Español and Ryan’s World Japan, EK Doodles, and a number of smaller channels. Combined, these channels already bring in an additional $20,000 to $100,000 every month.
Ryan’s net worth got another boost when he made the jump from YouTube to more mainstream entertainment. In 2017, Kaji signed a deal with digital media studio PocketWatch, Inc. to produce the Ryan’s Mystery Playdate show. Nickelodeon’s Nick Jr. channel picked up the show and started airing it in April 2019. The live-action episodes see Ryan, his parent, and two animated friends go through physical challenges while trying to solve puzzles. The show is now on its third season.
Here’s episode #1:
In 2019, the family also signed a deal with Hulu to repackage Ryan’s videos so they could be distributed to a bigger audience. There are few details about this deal and no public information on how much money the Kaji family is making with the Nickelodeon and the Hulu deals.
Partnerships and Sponsorships
Ryan’s partnership with PocketWatch is about more than just a live show. The company now handles all the merchandising for the show’s brand, which include an app called Tag with Ryan and its very own toy line selling at Wallmart. This includes squishy toys, stuffed animals, and T-shirts. Kaji even has a toothbrush line through Colgate.
In 2019, video game developer Outright Games released Race with Ryan, a racing video game for all playing platforms, including PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. A special edition of the game, called Road Trip Deluxe Edition will be released in October 2020.
Race with Ryan:
Kaji also receives sponsorships from different toy companies to review their toys. Recent Federal Trade Commission complaints allege that the family is not properly disclosing which content is sponsored and that some of the reviews could be considered deceptive advertising rather than the honest opinion of a child.
As with other areas, there’s no available information on how much money the Kajis receive in sponsorships or how the sales of their products are impacting their net worth. However, many of the products sell extremely well, so it’s fair to assume the revenues are healthy.
So How Much Money Does Ryan Kaji Make?
Despite their YouTube fame, the Kaji family has been able to maintain a good level of privacy. This includes where they live, many other personal details, and their net worth. As a result, it’s not possible to know exactly how much the 8-year-old has earned so far.
Estimates of Ryan Kaji’s actual net worth vary widely between $50 and $100 million. However, based on their annual YouTube earnings alone (latest earnings of $26 million), we estimate his net worth to be closer to $100 million if not higher.