The ex–heavyweight champ, current minister and pitchman, is testament to the power of reinvention. And he isn’t done yet.
George Foreman’s business philosophy can be reduced to three words: Never say no.
“Don’t ever stop earning,” he says. “It’s a curse to think you have enough. There is never enough. George Foreman, Bill Gates—anyone. Money has to be spent. It is not made to be saved.” Hence, it must be replenished, and replenish it Foreman does. You want to pay him $10,000 to share some tales with your business group of his days as heavyweight champ? He’s there. “I remember my first million-dollar check for a boxing match,” Foreman says. “What a joy. And then my first $5 million check. What a joy. But today I can go out and get a $5,000 check, and the joy is as great. Because I’m earning.”
Foreman may still have a few more acts in him. In 2013 he started a boxing-promotion business. And now he’s preparing to launch a whole new enterprise: an online butcher’s store, because, of course, people need meat to cook on their George Foreman grill.
He is often in motion but rarely in a hurry these days. Foreman lives on a gated 45-acre property not far from Houston. On a mild February day he offers a tour via golf cart. He points out the tennis court—which he has never used—and the stables. (Foreman keeps most of his 50 horses on his ranch in Marshall.) He opens a garage that boasts 38 cars. Ferrari, Porsche, Maybach, Tesla TSLA -3.17% —you name it, he has one. Foreman says the best model he ever owned was a 1977 VW Bug; that’s in there too. Does Foreman really need such big collections? No, he admits, but the horses keep breeding (“You’ve heard the expression ‘Be fruitful and multiply’?”), and he’s easily sold on cars: “I see these commercials and say, ‘Boy, I’ve got to have that …’ I need to stop."
At a professed 255 pounds, Foreman is still at his (comeback) fighting weight. He insists he works out daily, but there are as many toys (they belong to his grandkids) littering the floor of his workout room as there are weights. There’s also a huge George Foreman grill—which he says he uses right after he exercises—a few feet away.
Foreman stays plenty busy. His only day of rest is Monday. On Tuesdays, he says, “I try to take care of whatever business I have.” Wednesdays he ministers and tries to stop by the youth center that he founded 30 years ago. On Fridays he and his wife head to the ranch, where he raises horses and Black Angus cattle. When the couple arrive at the ranch, he says, his wife feels “instantly relaxed. But after two days I say, ‘Let’s leave!’ ” On Saturday evenings and Sundays he preaches and teaches Sunday school. The preaching is a job. Speeches, endorsements—those are jobs too. “The best thing that can ever happen to a human being is a job,” he says. “You don’t have a job, you’re going to die!"
Meanwhile, Foreman—“Big George”—has been in business with three of his five sons, all named George. George IV (“Bigwheel”) is his dad’s publicist and is working on the meat company. Two years ago Big George and George Jr. launched Foreman Boys Promotions, which has partnered with Bob Arum’s Top Rank to put on seven fights in Macau and a few in Texas. Arum was Big George’s promoter for his comeback, and he says Foreman is evidence that complete reinvention is possible. When Foreman first called him in 1987, Arum says, “I was not enthusiastic, realizing what a horrid person he had been.” Arum says Foreman’s personality was so altered that he suspected a con. “But it wasn’t a con,” Arum says he came to realize. “He had really changed."
Foreman is happy as an entrepreneur, the boxing mostly an ancient memory for him. But every now and again, he says, he’ll cue up a tape of the Rumble in the Jungle, the 1974 classic in which the fearsome young incarnation of Foreman was knocked out, in one of boxing’s great upsets, by Muhammad Ali.
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This story is from the March 15, 2015 issue of Fortune.