Noami Osaka surpasses her idol, Serena Williams, as the highest-paid female athlete ever at just 22-years-old.
Naomi Osaka is officially the highest-paid female athlete ever, surpassing her idol Serena Williams by over $1 million to earn the title at just 22-years-old.
In the last year, the Japanese-Haitian tennis star racked up $37.4 million from prize money and endorsement deals. This is $1.4 million more than Serena, making her the highest-paid female athlete in a single year. The record was previously held by Maria Sharapova, who made $29.7 million in 2015.
Despite being the top female earner in sports, Osaka ranks #29 on the list of the highest-paid athletes in the world.
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As specified by Forbes, the 22-year-old is backed by over fifteen endorsement deals, including partnerships with Nissan Motors, Shiseido, and more. She also signed an unprecedented deal with Nike, worth over $10 million, which does not require her to wear full Nike-branded apparel during her games.
"To those outside the tennis world, Osaka is a relatively fresh face with a great back story," said David Carter, a sports business professor at USC’s Marshall School of Business. "Combine that with being youthful and bicultural, two attributes that help her resonate with younger, global audiences, and the result is the emergence of a global sports marketing icon."
Congratulations to Naomi Osaka on this incredible feat.