Naomi Osaka has 19 Sponsors – Is That TOO MANY?

In 2020, Naomi Osaka was the highest-earning female athlete in the world. Forbes estimated that her annual earnings to be $37 million. But since then, Osaka has added a number of sponsors to her roster.

Naomi Osaka’s Sponsors

Here is a list of Naomi Osaka’s sponsors

  1. Louis Vuitton
  2. Hyperice
  3. Tag Heuer  (owned by Louis Vuitton)
  4. bareMinerals
  5. MasterCard
  6. Nike
  7. All Nippon Airways
  8. Nissin Group
  9. Shiseido
  10. BodyArmor
  11. Soto (also an investor)
  12. Nissan
  13. Citizen
  14. Yonex
  15. Workday
  16. Strathberry
  17. Wowow
  18. Sweetgreen (also an investor)
  19. Panasonic

In a few cases such as Sweetgreen and Soto, Osaka is a brand ambassador as well as investor.

Uniquely Marketable

Osaka was born in Osaka, Japan. Her mother, Tamaki Osaka, is Japanese and her father, Leonard François, is from Haiti. Osaka’s family moved to Florida when she was eight as Florida offered better training opportunities.

Osaka became a US citizen but later renounced it to play for Japan. With American and Japanese roots, Osaka was marketable like very few athletes.

There are very few Japanese athletes who are global superstars.  Japanese companies were lining up to sign Osaka for huge endorsement deals. Male Japanese tennis player Kei Nishikori consistently earns more from sponsorship deals than Rafael Nadal despite having won no grand slam titles

Osaka is also marketable in the United States. She has been vocal in her support for the Black Lives Matter movement. With Serena and Venus Williams nearing retirement, Osaka perfectly fills the void through her great performance on the court and her social activism.

Nike, in a rare move, allowed Osaka to wear patches from other sponsors on her shirt. This move suggested that Osaka wielded more power with her sponsors and was able to dictate the terms of the contract. 

Does Naomi Osaka have too many sponsors?

Every few weeks, Osaka announces a new partnership or an investment. One has to wonder – is she endorsing too many brands?

Are brands getting any value when Osaka is associated with 18 other brands? Is Osaka over-exposed – appearing in too many advertisements and social media promotions?

Roger Federer, who makes more than $100 million in endorsement earnings, has talked about how prefers to have a few but deep relationships with brands. But Osaka has taken the opposite route – choosing to have a large number of sponsors.

For now, sponsors don’t seem to care. With the Olympics coming up in 2021, Japanese companies want her to be the face of the Olympics. Global brands want a star who is globally recognizable. Money keeps coming for Naomi Osaka and she is happy to take it.

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