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The world's 30 most marketable sports stars revealed - and Cristiano Ronaldo is only EIGHTH

Mirror logo Mirror 13/01/2017 Mick Gadd

Credits: Getty Images North America

Credits: Getty Images North America
© Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc
Roger Federer is the most marketable star in world sport, with Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo only ranked eighth, according to new research. 

The fierce competition between global clothing brands drives income for the richest athletes ranked in the Sports Marketing Power List by the London School of Marketing.

Despite being out of action for six months and just returning back to action for the start of the season in Australia, Federer amassed almost £50m in off court earnings last year.

NBA star LeBron James is second with more than £44m ahead of golfer Phil Mickelson, whose endorsements amassed £41m, and injured Tiger Woods with £36.9m.

Just three British athletes crack the top 30, Rory McIlroy in sixth behind the NBA’s Kevin Durant, Andy Murray in 22nd and Gareth Bale in 29th. 

American basketball has the most marketable stars, with eight players in the top 30, while football has only four representatives with Barcelona’s Neymar and Lionel Messi joining Bale and Ronaldo.

Tennis have seven players on the list, including suspended Maria Sharapova and Serena Williams, the only two women in the top 30.

Researchers say the sports most dependent on endorsements are cricket (with 81 per cent of earnings coming from sponsors), tennis (78 per cent) and golf (75 per cent). 

Credits: Getty Images © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc Credits: Getty Images “Despite Roger Federer’s slow year in terms of success in his sport, his successful endorsement deals show that personal characteristics can also be an important part of long-lasting sponsorships," said London School of Marketing’s Jacques de Cock.

“Male athletes still dominate perhaps because they offer advantages to marketers that want to tap into the traditionally hard to reach male consumer market.

“Fans tend to buy sports clothing and equipment based on what the key sportsman wear, which explains why endorsements are such a major part of cricket, tennis and golf.

“Endorsements are such a powerful way for brands to market their products. This is because they increase brand awareness, validate product features, boost brand equity, and reach the difficult 16-30 year old male market."

Sports Marketing Power List

 
Endorsements £mSponsors include
1. Roger Federer (tennis)49.2Nike, Wilson, Credit Suisse, Mercedes, Rolex
2. LeBron James (NBA)44.3Upper Deck, Nike, beats, Coke, Kia, Samsung
3. Phil Mickelson (golf)41Callaway, Amgen, Barclays, Exxon, KPMG, Rolex
4. Tiger Woods (golf)36.9Nike, Rolex, Upper Deck, Hero Motorcorp
5. Kevin Durant (NBA)29.5Nike, BBVA, beats, 2K Sports, Panini
6. Rory McIlroy (golf)28.7Nike, EA, Omega, Upper Deck, Bose,
7. Novak Djokovic (tennis)27.9Adidas, Uniqlo, Head, Seiko, ANZ, Peugeot
8. Cristiano Ronaldo (football)26.2Nike, Tag Heuer, Herbalife
9. Jordan Spieth (golf)26.2Titleist, Netjets, AT&T, Coke, Rolex, Under Armour
10. Rafael Nadal (tennis)26.2Nike, Tommy Hilfiger, Kia, Telefonica
11. Lionel Messi (football)23.0Adidas, EA, Gatorade, Gilette, tata
12. MS Dhoni (cricket)22.1Reebok, PepsiCo, Sony
13. Kobe Bryant (NBA)20.5Nike, Panini, Hublot
14. Neymar (football)18.9Nike, Red Bull, Konami, Gilette, Pan
15. Kei Nishikori (tennis)16.4Adidas, Wilson, Tag Heuer, Uniqlo, Jaguar, Nissan, Asahi, Delta
16. Usain Bolt (athletics)16.4Puma, Gatoraid, Hublot, ANA, Nissan
17. Serena Williams (tennis)16.4Nike, Beats, IBM, PepsiCo, Delta, Wilson, Gatorade, Chase
18. Maria Sharapova (tennis)16.4Nike, Evian, Head, Netjets, Avon, Porsche
19. Virat Kohli (cricket)14.8Nike, PepsiCo, Toyota
20. James Harden (NBA)13.9Adidas, New Era, Beats, BBVA, Foot Locker
21. Peyton Manning (NFL)12.3Nike, Gatorade, DirecTV, Buick, Fanatic, Papa Johns
22. Andy Murray (tennis)12.3Head, Jaguar, Standard Life, Under Armour
23. Derrick Rose (NBA)11.5Adidas, Powerade
24. Cam Newton (NFL)9.8Beats, Gatorade, EA, Under Armour
25. Floyd Mayweather (boxing)9.8Burger King, FanFuel, Hublot
26. Dwyane Wade (NBA)9.8FanDuel, Gatorade, Hublot, Li-Ning, Pepperidge Farm
27. Drew Brees (NFL)9.8Nike, Wrangler, P&G, Verizon, Microsoft, PepsiCo, AdvoCare
28. Stephen Curry (NBA)9.8Fanatics, Kaiser Permanente, Chase
29. Gareth Bale (football)9.0Konami, Adidas, EA, Sony, Foot Locker
30. Kyle Irving (NBA)9.0Nike, Panini, PepsiCo, Verizon, Skullcandy, Activision, FootLocker


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