How did Roger Federer become the highest-paid tennis player despite featuring in just five tournaments in 2021?

Roger Federer at the Wimbledon Championships 2021
Roger Federer at the Wimbledon Championships 2021

Former World No.1 Roger Federer was the highest-paid tennis player in 2021. According to Forbes, the Swiss maestro earned a whopping $90.6 million despite featuring in just five tournaments during the 2021 season.

The second highest-paid tennis athlete is Naomi Osaka but she is way behind Roger Federer with a total of $60.1 million to her name. While 90% of Osaka's capital came from her on-court earnings, Federer made only around $0.6 million on the court. So how did the 20-time Grand Slam champion manage to earn $90 million in 2021?

Roger Federer has signed some great endorsement deals in the recent past

Federer's earnings came mostly from sponsorship and endorsement deals. As part of his exclusive 10-year deal with the Japanese clothing company, Uniqlo, he earns $30 million every year. Interestingly, even if Federer retires before the deal expires, he would still get $300 million by the end of 2027.

Roger Federer at Indian Wells Masters
Roger Federer at Indian Wells Masters

Besides, Federer is also the brand ambassador of many big companies and firms including the likes of Mercedes-Benz, Credit Suisse, Rolex, Barilla, Moet & Chandon and Switzerland Tourism, from which he receives a heavy check every year.

Federer's records speak for themselves. His many achievements and a global fan-base are contributing factors to many endorsement and sponsorship deals coming his way. In an era where sponsors are dominating the sport to a large extent, Federer's polite nature and sporting spirit have made him one of the top-most priorities of many big brands today.

Roger Federer might earn even more in 2022 because of his investment in 'On Holding'

Since his deal with Uniqlo doesn't restrict the Swiss to wearing any particular brand of shoes, the former World No. 1 has invested in a Swiss-based shoe-making company called 'On Holding'.

'On Holding' is about to complete an initial public offering in the US soon. According to Yahoo Finance estimates, the company will have an enterprise value of about four times its 2023 sales, taking its overall estimated value between $6 to $12 billion.

Roger Federer at Indian Wells Masters
Roger Federer at Indian Wells Masters

The public offering comes as the company's athletic shoes are selling well. With gyms closed during the COVID-19 pandemic, people have resorted to other means for keeping themselves fit. In addition, the company recently tied up with Roger Federer and developed the 'Roger Pro tennis shoes', priced at $200 a pair.

All these factors point to the fact that Roger Federer is about to receive a huge paycheck in the upcoming years. Will these deals help him surpass the likes of Conor McGregor, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo to become the highest-paid athlete in 2022?

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