Tiger`s wins, fame likely to deter sponsor losses

Updated: Dec 01, 2009, 14:41 PM IST

Florida: Companies like Nike Inc are not expected to sever their ties with golfer Tiger Woods, who has sponsorship deals worth an estimated USD 100 million a year, after his weekend car accident, analysts and consultants said.

Early returns showed companies are standing by the popular golfer.

"Tiger Woods is one of the premier athletes in the world and we are proud to have him involved with NetJets," David Sokol, chief executive of Berkshire Hathaway Inc`s NetJets private jet unit, said in an e-mail statement.

Nike Golf global public relations manager Beth Gast echoed that sentiment: "Tiger and his family have Nike`s full support."

Woods, whom Forbes magazine recently said had become the first athlete to earn more than USD 1 billion in his career, crashed his Cadillac Escalade into a fire hydrant and tree outside his mansion in Florida early Friday morning.

On Sunday, the 33-year-old golfer said in a statement that he was embarrassed by the accident.

Woods, considered the best golfer of his generation, has had numerous sponsorship deals through the years for everything from Nike to automobiles to shave creams to sports drinks.

Officials with PepsiCo Inc brand Gatorade "look forward to seeing him back on the course soon. Our partnership with Tiger continues," a spokeswoman said in a statement.

Bureau Report