Brand Virat Kohli more valuable than football star Lionel Messi: Forbes

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Virat Kohli (File Photo)
Virat Kohli (File Photo)

New Delhi : Forbes magazine has ranked Indian Cricketer Virat Kohli higher than football legend Linonel Messi in its annual the top 10 of international athletes with the highest brand value. 

With a brand value of $14.5 million (Rs 94 crore), Kohli is placed at seventh in the overall list, about a million more than Messi’s $13.5 million (Rs 87.5 crore) at ninth.

NBA great Steph Curry and golf star Rory McIlroy have also been ranked below Kohli with their brand value of $13.4 million and $13.6 million. 

Forbes calculates an athlete’s brand value by their earnings (excluding salary and bonus from their sport and all investment), minus the average income of the top 10 athletes in the same sport. This essentially means endorsements and other such earning other than match fees.

Roger Federer tops the list with a brand value of $37.2 million (Rs 241 crore), followed by LeBron James with $33.4 million (Rs 216.5 crore), Usain Bolt with $27 million (Rs 175 crore), and Cristiano Ronaldo with $21.5 million (Rs 139.3 crore).

According to reports, a jump in Kohli’s brand value has a lot to do with his eight-year contract with German sports apparel maker Puma, worth Rs 110 crore. He inked this contract in February this year, becoming first Indian sportsman to get an over Rs 100 crore deal from a single brand. 

Top 10 in the Forbes List

1. Roger Federer $37.2m 

2. LeBron James $33.4m 

3. Usain Bolt $27m 

4. Cristiano Ronaldo $21.5m 

5. Phil Mickelson $19.6m 

6. Tiger Woods $16.6m 

7. Virat Kohli $14.5m 

8. Rory McIlroy $13.6m 

9. Lionel Messi $13.5m 

10. Steph Curry $13.4m