As the tennis queen bows, look at the Serena Williams brand and her values

Waving everyone goodbye, Serena emotional said: “I wouldn’t be Serena without Venus. So thank you, Venus. She’s the only reason Serena Williams ever existed. “

“It all started with my parents, they deserved everything. I’m so grateful to them. These are happy tears, I guess,” Serena said in a video posted by the US Open. “It was a fun ride,” she said. “It was the most incredible ride and journey I’ve ever been on, I mean, in my life. I am grateful for every single person who has said, ‘Go away, Serena,’ in their life. I’m so grateful. You’ve got me here. “

Williams lost to Australia’s Ajla Tomljanovic in three sets at New York’s Arthur Ashe Stadium on Friday, a day after she and her sister Venus left the doubles competition following a loss in the first round.

Serena is an inspiration to many – from children to adults – and is the most successful female tennis player. Both sisters, Serena and Venus took the tennis world by storm when they emerged from the criminal courts of Compton, California in their teens and went on to dominate and change the face of the host sport. Weak whites.

Throughout her career, Serena has been associated with many major brands such as Nike, Wilson, Intel, Lincoln Motor Company and many others. Female athletes have long had to fight for what they’re worth, be it sponsorship or organizational pay.

Serena Williams and brands

The sports icon has worked with a number of brands, starting with a five-year grant to Puma SE at the start of her career, valued at $13 million, as reported by Bloomberg. A long-term partnership with Nike Inc. was continued in 2003, the company has grown into an in-house incubator for fashion designers. The company also dedicated the largest building on its Beaverton, Oregon campus to her. “The thing about Serena is that she’s going to transcend sport,” said Tanya Hvizdak, Nike’s global vice president of women’s sports marketing. many different aspects and showing aspects of herself, whether it be a mother or a champion of diverse designers or other aspects, will be her legacy. “

Jeff Kearney, Gatorade’s global head of sports marketing, said Serena has had a lasting impact on marketing budgets everywhere and her overwhelming success has convinced Pepsico Inc., The company first partnered with Williams in 2009, spending more on female athletes.

“Across the different brands and companies she works for, they’re investing more in the girls’ game,” Kearney said. career, with Super Bowl commercials, such as one alongside WNBA star Nneka Ogwumike and Women’s World Cup champion Alex Morgan. Ricardo Marques, vice president of marketing, said Williams played a key role in boosting dollars spent on women in sports.

“Serena is a catalyst,” says Marques. “She’s given the confidence to brands like us to move forward and put these commitments, dollars, to make that support all the more obvious.”

In addition, Delta Air Lines Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. was also a sponsor. In 2017, tech giant Intel teamed up with Serena. In 2018, Serena linked up with Lincoln, an American luxury automaker owned by Ford, where she endorsed Lincoln’s Navigator SUV. In 2018, Serena Williams launched her own clothing line called Serena. When she appeared in an inspirational Chase commercial, it showed her returning to the game after her daughter was born. Her other brands include Gatorade, Beats by Dre, Audemars Piguet, Bumble, IBM.

The U.S. Soccer Federation only announced this year that male and female athletes will be paid the same, and pay disparities persist for golfers, basketball and tennis players. female. Nike also changed its policy on paying pregnant athletes after track and field athlete Allyson Felix and others allege they were abused during their pregnancy. In March, the company also announced a new think-tank initiative, featuring Williams and 12 other female athletes sponsored by Nike. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Serena William’s net worth is estimated at $250 million.

Brand support and more

Brand endorsements also include standing with Williams and other athletes as they navigate the inequalities brought into tennis. The Williams sisters have both endured racism throughout their careers, and Serena is no stranger to double standards and unfair treatment. Her sponsors followed suit. After the French Open protested the jumpsuit she wore to the 2018 tournament, Nike tweeted in support.

“Support in those times is key because not only does it raise an element of consent, which is in the sporting arena and we support that athlete, but beyond that,” says Hvizdak. also, women’s rights and opportunities in that respect,” said Hvizdak. supported Williams in both design and function – it provides compression to help dissolve blood clots – underscoring Nike’s commitment to working with Williams and other female athletes on what they need , she added.

“You’re seeing the money work, but there needs to be more money across the industry,” said Nike’s Hvizdak. And while Williams may be leaving the tournament ring soon, the brands won’t continue to work with her if she has them. “Her name is always at the top of the list,” says Gatorade’s Kearney.

“Her name is always at the top of the list,” says Gatorade’s Kearney.

Meanwhile, Williams, who turns 41 later this month, plans to “grow” away from tennis after the US Open campaign. She has also written her first children’s book which will go on sale at the end of September.

She also made it clear that she would direct her curiosity and head to her investment firm, Serena Ventures. She will enhance her spiritual life. She will grow like a mother. “I thought I was good at it,” she says of parenting, “But I wanted to find out if I could be good at it.”

Speaking of her next thing, i.e. Serena Ventures, she told Vogue earlier this month, that the investment firm has now funded 16 companies valued at $1 billion or more and 78% of the portfolio. Their investments are in companies founded by women or people of color.

(With input from Boomberg)

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