Roger Federer Ditches Nike, Reportedly Signs $300-million Contract With Uniqlo
On Monday, tennis legend Roger Federer ended the debate and rumours about his departure from the 21-year-old association with Nike, by donning Uniqlo as he stepped on to the court to play against Dusan Lajovic.
ESPN was the first to report that Federer had signed a 10-year contract with the Japanese casual-wear brand which was worth $300-million. The contract also includes a clause, apparently, which states that Federer gets to keep the money even if he is not competing. NYT reports that if true, this would be one of the largest endorsement agreements ever.
— UNIQLO UK (@UNIQLO_UK) July 2, 2018
The Express reported that the 36-year-old will likely continue to play till he is 43. “Uniqlo must have a lot of money but it goes to show Federer is only human. It is weird but in a way, the likes of Rolex and Mercedes are luxury brands and maybe Uniqlo will become one with Federer wearing their clothes. I think you have to look at the way he’s playing and he must plan on playing until 42 or 43, absolutely,” said sports pundit Mats Wilander.
While there was a lot of talk about the $30 million a year deal, Sports Business Journal reporter Daniel Kaplan believes that its all hogwash.
“Federer-Uniqlo deal (is) nowhere near $30 million a year,” Kaplan tweeted. “It’s $10 million a year, Nike offered $5 million a year and only if he was playing. Uniqlo guaranteed for a decade.”
Have on good authority Federer Uniqlo deal nowhere near 30 mil a year. Its 10 mil a year, Nike offered 5 mil a year and only if he was playing. Uniqlo guaranteed for a decade
— daniel kaplan (@dkaplanSBJ) July 5, 2018
With this elite deal, however, Federer joins the likes of Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James and new Juventus player Cristiano Ronaldo. The BBC reports that a deal worth £105m has been reached between Juventus and Real Madrid and The Guardian reports that the forward has signed a four-year-deal with an annual salary of about €30m.
According to reports, LeBron James has agreed to a four-year deal with the Los Angeles Lakers and will be playing for them on a $153.3 million contract. While the numbers are astonishingly large, it’s not surprising to see such expensive transfers in the field of sports. In 2016, Manchester United paid Paul Pogba €105 million, an amount that broke records at that time. The following summer, Neymar was lured away from Barcelona by Paris St. Germain who paid him €222 million.