Naomi Osaka introduced herself to the world with her memorable 2018 U.S. Open title over Serena Williams, and the 22-year-old Japanese tennis ace backed it up with two more Grand Slam wins, including this month’s spectator-free Open. Her on-court success and heritage—a Japanese mother and a Haitian-American father—triggered a feeding frenzy of companies who wanted to be in the Naomi Osaka business. The result: $37.4 million in earnings during the 12 months ending in May, a record tally for a female athlete.
6: Osaka has made her tournament victories count, with three Grand Slams out of her six career titles, as well as a win at Indian Wells, often referred to as the “Fifth Slam” for its large prize money and attendance.
15: Osaka has one of the deepest endorsement portfolios in all of the sports with 15 sponsors. Olympic sponsors, like Procter & Gamble, All Nippon Airways, and Nissin, all signed deals with Osaka to use her around marketing for the Tokyo Games, now scheduled for 2021.
$10M: Nike is Osaka’s most lucrative endorsement partnership, paying her more than $10 million last year after a bidding war with Adidas. The Swoosh plans to launch an Osaka streetwear line in Japan in the fourth quarter, featuring hoodies, leggings, and shirts.
1: Osaka reached No. 1 in the Women’s Tennis Association rankings in January 2019, becoming the first Asian-born player, male or female, to top the world rankings.
Osaka has used her growing platform to call attention to racial injustice. She originally pulled out of an August tournament in protest over the police shooting of Jacob Blake before event organizers followed her lead and delayed the matches. Her face masks during the 2020 U.S. Open brought increased attention to Black people killed by police, including George Floyd, Trayvon Martin, and Breonna Taylor. “All the people that were telling me to ‘keep politics out of sports’ (which it wasn’t political at all), really inspired me to win. You better believe I’m gonna try to be on your tv for as long as possible,” she tweeted after winning her Open title.