These three international athletes are nearing the top of their game, and their endorsement earnings are set to soar.
Virat Kohli Cricket With longtime champ Sachin Tendulkar going into retirement, Kohli’s already impressive career is expected to skyrocket. At 24, he already has more ads on Indian television than MS Dhoni. His take last year: $11 million, including $8.5 million in endorsements for Vicks, PepsiCo, Toyota and Nestlé.
Kei Nishikori Tennis Only hardcore sports fans may have heard of this 23-year-old—he reached the Australian Open quarterﬁnal in 2012—but that hasn’t stopped him from raking in sponsors including Uniqlo, Adidas and Tag Heuer. As Japan’s top tennis player, he made $10.5 million last year—$9 million from endorsements.
Neymar Soccer This 21-year-old Brazilian’s income is valued at $20.5 million this year, half of it from deals with Nike, Panasonic and others. That number should explode in 2014, thanks to his ﬁve-year contract with FC Barcelona. Sponsors are lining up in anticipation of his becoming one of the world’s most famous athletes.