How Leaving Nike Made Roger Federer $600 Million Richer

Federer is one of six athletes who have earned more than $1 billion while still active

Roger Federer of Switzerland in action at Wimbledon
Roger Federer of Switzerland in action at Wimbledon in 2021 in London.
Simon Bruty/Anychance/Getty

But only about $130 million of Federer’s earnings have come from official prize money (a figure that puts him second on the all-time list in tennis, after Novak Djokovic’s $152 million), according to The New York Times. The rest of the Swiss tennis star’s career earnings have come through sponsorships, endorsements and appearance fees at events and tournaments.

And amazingly enough, a huge amount of those earnings have come after the 40-year-old left behind a $10 million annual sponsorship deal with Nike. How did that happen? Joe Pompliano of the Huddle Up newsletter explains.

For the time being, Federer’s wild story is not over, as he is still, at least technically, active. But retirement could be coming soon for the all-time great.

“When, like any athlete, you will just know when the time is right,” Federer recently told GQ. “I am not going to be the one that’s just going to stick around because I want to stick around. You know, I still want to play exhibitions down the road and have fun and go to markets in places I’ve never been before. The fans mean a lot to me, but I do not want to abuse my body. I still want to run around with my kids and ski … So I think you just know.”

Win the Ultimate Formula 1® Miami Grand Prix Experience

Want the F1 experience of a lifetime? Here’s your chance to win tickets to see Turn 18 Grandstand, one of Ultimate Formula 1® Miami Grand Prix’s most premier grandstands!