Tiger Woods is about to sign a new deal with Nike, Bob Harig of ESPN reports.
His agent says it will “emphatically” make Tiger the highest-paid endorser in golf — implying that Tiger’s deal will be bigger than the rumoured ~$20 million Rory McIlroy makes annually from Nike.
It’s not much of a surprise. It’s hard to imagine Tiger representing another brand at this point in his career. And it’s hard to see Nike ditching one of its signature athlete in the middle of his career comeback.
But Nike’s decision to wait to re-sign Tiger may have cost them millions.
Last year Nike offered Tiger a smaller deal that would have paid him “high teens” annually, according to golf writer Steve Elling. Tiger was asking for $40 million annually at the time — the same as his last contract — a source told Elling.
The details of this deal (and Tiger’s last deal) are unknown. That $40 million figure is bigger than every other guess we’ve seen on Tiger’s Nike income.
But Tiger’s agent is using some pretty strong language (“bold,” “emphatically,” etc.), and logic suggests that Nike lost its leverage once Tiger went on his hot streak this spring.
Ultimately Nike had a chance to ink Tiger when his career was flagging, and they didn’t.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.