How Much Did Barbara Walters Get for Selling Her Stake in ‘The View’?
As TV shows go, it’s near impossible to find one with more longevity than The View. Barbara Walters created the daytime talk show in 1997, at a time when there wasn’t anything like it on the air. Twenty-two years later, the show still generates buzz and posts solid ratings for ABC.
Prior to her retirement in 2014, Walters had executive producer and creator credits while regularly appearing as a co-host. Her legendary status at ABC and 50% ownership of The View meant she could mostly run the show as she pleased.
When she said her final goodbyes, the co-hosts and producers naturally thought Walters would keep her hand in the show’s operations behind the scenes. But, unbeknownst to all, something had changed prior to Walters’s exit at The View.
On the advice of her lawyer, Walters cashed in her ownership stake before leaving. While that meant she no longer had a say in The View, it also meant a massive windfall for the broadcast legend.
Walters reportedly sold her stake in ‘The View’ for ‘tens of millions.’
During her long career as a journalist, Walters was known for getting access to the world’s news-makers and asking tough questions when she did. When she shifted to her talk-show format, she didn’t let go of that edge — especially as a producer.
Her most famous power play may have come with the firing of Elisabeth Hasselbeck. After telling Hasselbeck they were taking her out of The View’s lineup, Walters guaranteed Hasselbeck’s silence on the matter by getting Roger Ailes to give her a job at Fox News.
That ability to control the narrative and maneuver behind the scenes was part of what made The View such a success. When Walters did decide to let go of her stake, the show was by then worth a fortune.
In his View tell-all Ladies Who Punch, Ramin Setoodeh reported the sale was worth “tens of millions.” It only boosted Walters’s already massive net worth.
The sale pushed Walters’s net worth over $150 million.
You might wonder what the difference is between, say, $140 million and $170 million, and you wouldn’t be alone. According to Setoodeh, one of the View producers wondered why Walters would let go of her control for money she didn’t exactly need. (Walters reportedly regretted the decision as well.)
Regardless, following the sale, Walters’s net worth has been estimated at well above $150 million. (Celebrity Net Worth pegged her fortune at $170 million.) Her sale of The View pushed Walters into that elite territory.
She didn’t sit on the proceeds from of View windfall for long. In 2015, Walters donated $15 million to Sarah Lawrence College (her alma mater). It was the largest single donation in the school’s history. Future Sarah Lawrence students will walk into the The Barbara Walters Campus Center on the New York school’s historic campus.