• Today
    April 24

  • 04:56 PM

US$400m. Bolt

rhondathompson, rhondathompson@nationnews.com

Added 25 August 2010

KINGSTON – Jamaican sprint sensation Usain Bolt yesterday signed a lucrative multimillion-dollar endorsement deal with sportswear giants PUMA, positioning the World and Olympic champion as one of the highest earners in world sport. While a release from Bolt’s handlers did not name a figure, the Caribbean Media Corporation understands the deal could be worth as much as US$400 million. The 24-year-old is one of the most recognisable in world sport, following breathtaking world record feats in winning the 100 and 200 metres at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 and the World Championships in Berlin last year. “PUMA’s been by my side since the beginning, before anyone knew what I was capable of achieving,” said Bolt. “They saw potential in me and they took a chance, supporting me all the way, especially when things weren’t easy for me due to injuries I suffered in my teens.Easy decision“We’ve been partners in the truest sense of the word since Day 1, and so it’s an easy decision to resign with them. PUMA gets me; we fit together. They take the business of running seriously but we also know how to have fun, to be spontaneous. We both bring a lot of personality to the sport.” The deal is expected to run until the end of 2013 and will see PUMA continue to outfit Bolt in training and lifestyle clothing and footwear. Bolt will be in the forefront of the company’s global marketing campaigns and will be key to their London 2012 Olympic programme. “Usain Bolt has been a revelation for track and field athletics,” said Jochen Zeitz, the chairman and CEO of PUMA AG. “He’s shined a global spotlight on the sport. His winning personality and phenomenal physical prowess are a unique combination. The way he both engages his fans and is energized by them has helped his popularity escalate to extraordinary levels over the past two years.” Bolt has been aligned with PUMA since his youth days when he became the world’s fastest junior at age 16 in 2003.Staying with PUMA And though speculation was rife that Bolt would have maybe parted ways with the brand after his huge success at the Beijing Olympics, the Jamaican remained put, placing the brand on show when he dominated last year’s World Championships in Berlin. “Usain has been a tremendous force for the PUMA brand. He embodies the joy, playfulness and irreverence that are the cornerstone of our brand,” Zeitz pointed out. “His Lightning Bolt ‘To Di World’ pose from the Beijing Games in 2008 is now one of the most recognizable symbols in sport. He’s obviously a lot of fun to work with. (CMC)

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