Tiger Burns Bright As World’s Leading Sport Brand

Golfer Tiger Woods may have faced some personal demons over recent years, but his name is still the world’s biggest sports brand, according to new research.

Tiger Woods is recognisable the world over as a brand is worth £19.5 million, says a survey by rich list US magazine Forbes.

Although Woods is considered a falling star due to a lack of success in the past two seasons, just stepping out on the course makes him a financial winner thanks to companies paying for the privilege of him wearing their sponsored kit.

The magazine worked out brand values by taking the difference between how much sport stars earned in endorsements compared with the average value of endorsements paid to the top 10 players in the same sport.

Another US golfer snatched second place – Phil Mickelson – with a brand worth of £18.2 million.

Why sports brands spend so much on sponsorship

Tennis ace Roger Federer and Cleveland Cavaliers basketball player LeBron James are equal fourth with a personal brand worth £17.5 million.

Other big names making up the top 10 are Indian cricketer MS Dhoni (£14 million), while champion sprinter Usain Bolt and Oklahoma City Thunder basketball star tie for sixth place on £12 million.

Portugal and Real Madrid striker Cristiano Ronaldo (£10.4 million) is eighth, with another golfer, Rory McIlroy next on £8 million and boxer Floyd ‘The Money’ Mayweather 10th with a brand value of £7.5 million.

The point raised by Forbes is that sponsoring athlete brands that regularly appear on TV to target potential customers is cheaper for sports companies than buying commercials in the program coverage of a live event.

The research also looked at the brand value of sports companies and events.

Most valuable teams and companies

Most of the leaders are US based – The US football Super Bowl is the world’s most valuable sporting brand at £375 million. Even the Olympics fall short of this massive brand – with the Summer Olympics tagged at £225 million and the Winter Olympics at £185 million.

Despite the global appeal of soccer compared to US Football, the major events are poor cousins, with the World Cup taking fourth place at £149 million, while the European Champions League lags at eighth with a worth of £82 million.

Real Madrid is the top soccer team, with a brand worth £300 million.

Nike wins the business brand title with a £17 billion valuation, with sports network ESPN second at £11 billion and Adidas next at £4bn.