Caitlyn Jenner’s astonishing net worth after Kardashians stopped her going broke

When Caitlyn Jenner sprinted her way to gold in the decathlon at the 1976 Montreal Olympics, her fortunes were transformed overnight.

The I'm A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here star – who before her 2015 transition was known as Bruce – made half a million dollars in the first 12 months alone which was a staggering amount back then.

She was the face of Tropicana and Wheaties and made a fortune delivering public speeches about her life-changing 48 hours.

But her career ground to a devastating halt following her 1986 split from Linda Thompson. She'd told Linda about her desire to be a woman and they divorced soon after.

Caitlyn retreated to a poky one-bedroom house in the Malibu Hills where she tentatively began her transition, taking hormones for breast growth and having her beard removed through painful electrolosis.

Living as a recluse by day, she would drive around Los Angeles dressed as a woman by night as the work dried up.

Eight years after her last paid-for speech and with just £154 in the bank, the situation was desperate and she decided to abandon her transition amid worries about her four young children.

"I got to 39 and I couldn’t do it," she told the Guardian.

"For six years I had isolated myself in a house, didn’t date, didn’t go out. And I’m thinking, boy, maybe I should get back into the game. I’m just sitting here in this house, rotting away. I just don’t have the guts to do it."

And that's when she heard about Kris Kardashian – a young Beverly Hills housewife with impeccable taste and a love of shopping.

Taking part in a celebrity fishing show in Alaska in 1990, the wife of Los Angeles Dodgers' star Steve Garvey suggested Cait should meet Kris – who was then divorcing top lawyer Robert Kardashian.

At first she wasn't interested, telling her match-making friend that the last thing she needed was a "Beverly Hills shopper".

But when she heard about Kris' four children, she though, "she comes with as much baggage as me."

They hit it off and married within a year, at which point business-savvy Kris realised they needed to make some money, and quickly.

"I became his manager instantly because he didn't have a lot going on. I saw this incredible potential, and he wasn't doing anything," Kris said on a podcast with writer and transgender rights activist Janet Mock.

"Nobody was booking him for speeches. Nobody was sending him out on the road. I thought, Wow. You should be this incredible public speaker. I just figured it out to that point."

She had no income following her own divorce and borrowed from friends, spending the last bit of her cash on glossy press packs for Caitlyn.

Kris sacked Caitlyn's agents and sent the packs out to 7,000 public speaking agencies across the States. The bookings soon rolled in, and so did the adverts.

Cait posed for Eagle Eyes Sunglasses and plugged a piece of exercise equipment called the SuperStep. Kris and Cait did an infomercial series called Super Fit with Bruce and Kris Jenner' and their bank balance started rising.

Kris realised how much they'd achieved when they sat talking to the head of Coca-Cola at the Olympics, but she has always insisted their marriage was about love, not business.

"I fell in love with him, 150 per cent," she said.

"I've always looked at things like, 'We're just going to figure this out." I don't stop and think about, What's the plan here?

"I just went for it. I realized after we got married and I had a limited amount of money, and I said, 'We're going to move into this house. We're going to work hard.'"

Of course, it was their 2007 reality show, Keeping Up With the Kardashians that propelled them to the big time and according to reports, by the time Kris and Caitlyn split in 2013 they had £46million to share equally.

Kris kept their Hidden Hills estate, Caitlyn got the £174,000 Sherwood Country Club membership that Kris bought her two decades earlier.

To mark the start of a her new chapter, Caitlyn bought a 3,500 sq ft four-bedroom clifftop home in Malibu, "not some mansion of a monstrosity like all my kids live in," she told the Guardian.

"It’s a humble little place. I bought an airplane, just a small one, because I’ve always been into aviation and Kris didn’t like that, so I’d been out of it for 15 years. I bought a couple of little race cars," she said.

And since her transition she made yet more money thanks to her reality series I Am Cait, autobiography My Secrets of My Life and ad deals with MAC and H&M Sport, putting her net worth at £77million.

And despite her differences with Kris, she admits she will always be grateful to her ex for changing her life.

"We paired up and were a great team. It was 23 years of my life. We raised wonderful children. She was an extraordinary good business person," she said.

"I owe her a debt of gratitude for getting me out of this hole and getting me back working. It was a very mutual decision to split. I didn’t leave to go transition.”

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