Li Na World’s Second Highest Earning Female Athlete
Li Na is set to be the world’s second highest earning female athlete after she signs endorsement deals worth around US$ 42 million dollars. Na became the first Asia Grand Slam Champion in June and has signed seven endorsement deals that are worth between US$ 2 million to US$ 3.5 million annually with a contract period of three years each.
These endorsements will make her the second highest earning female athlete, behind Maria Sharapova who makes about US$ 24 million a year in prize money and endorsements. Most Chinese women have been winning Olympics gold medals and grand slams in the doubles, it was only Li Na that broke the singles drought when she defeated Schiavone in Paris.
Li has signed deals with carmaker Daimler AG amd Mercedes Benz and Chinese insurance company, Taikang Life Insurance Co. Na will be wearing both companies’ logos as patches on her sleeves of her outfit made by her sponsor Nike Inc. Li is the only player that Nike allowed to have logos attached to her outfit.
Li’s other endorsement deals will help in her project to build a tennis academy in her home country that will be completed later this year. Na has the ability to crack the Chinese market which is such an important and difficult market for American and European brands to penetrate. The tennis star’s victories in Melbourne already lead to sponsorship deals with watch brand Rolex and ice cream maker Haagen Dazs and the Chinese Website Sina.