Sports Business: Naomi Osaka’s endorsement portfolio continues to grow, now brand ambassador for HR firm Workday

Sports Business – Naomi Osaka Workday: Before Australian Open 2021 Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka has expanded her already extensive sponsorship portfolio via an agreement with human resources firm Workday. Osaka, a three-time Grand Slam winner and reigning US Open champion, will sport the firm’s logo on her playing outfit during tournaments, starting with this month’s ‘A Day at the Drive’ exhibition event in Adelaide, Australia.

The new deal comes after an eventful 2020 for Osaka, who was widely praised for raising awareness of racial injustice through her support of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement on her way to winning the US Open for a second time in September.

In a release announcing the deal, terms of which have not been released, Workday cited Osaka’s role as ‘a leading voice of the social justice movement’ as one element of her commercial appeal.

“I take great pride in who I partner with and am honoured to team up with Workday,” Osaka said in the statement. “We have shared values, and together, we will continue to strive to do the right thing.”

It is the third endorsement deal announced this month by the 23-year-old after she confirmed new agreements with French fashion house Louis Vuitton and Swiss watch brand Tag Heuer.

Last year saw Osaka overtake Serena Williams as the world’s highest-paid female athlete, according to Forbes, which estimates that the world number three earned around US$34 million in 2020 from her endorsement deals with the likes of Nike, Beats by Dre, Mastercard and Nissin, among others.

Osaka, who also owns equity stakes in BodyArmor and Hyperice, is set to compete in next month’s Australian Open, the tennis season’s first Grand Slam.