Roger Federer is rumoured to leaving Nike in favour of Uniqlo. The news comes in the lead up to this year’s Wimbledon tournament, where Federer is expected to be wearing Uniqlo kit.
Federer’s 10-year Nike deal, which ended earlier this year, was believed to be worth in the region of $10m a year (£7.5 million), accounting for over 10% of his annual earnings (Forbes estimate his income to be in the region of $77 million a year). Endorsements make up the majority of Federer’s pay packet and are estimated to be worth $65 million per year, putting the tennis star in the number 7 spot on the list of sport’s highest earners.
While nothing has been confirmed in regards to Uniqlo, respected tennis journalist Vincenzo Martucci suggested that the Japanese retailer would be willing to pay Federer $30m (about £22.5m) per year for the next 10 years, even after the 36-year-old has stopped competing in major tournaments. That’s 3x the current amount he gets paid from Nike and would potentially increase his annual salary by 25%.
While the new deal would certainly be kind to Federer’s bank balance, he would have to look elsewhere for a shoe sponsor as Uniqlo doesn’t currently manufacture tennis footwear. Nike is also believed to own the rights to Federer’s iconic RF logo, so Uniqlo would need to start from scratch in terms of his branding.