Woods’ fortune taking a hit
Tiger Woods hasn’t won yet this season on the PGA Tour, and a new report shows his endorsement portfolio has shrunk by $22 million.
If his real life is in reverse, Woods’ virtual world isn’t faring much better.
According to market research group NPD, sales of his EA Sports video game – Tiger Woods PGA Tour '11 – fell 68 percent compared with the same period a year ago. Unlike some of Woods’ sponsors who dropped him after his sex scandal, EA continues to use Woods’ image to push its product.
Company officials have downplayed questions about his marketability and blamed the weaker sales more on Woods’ lackluster performance on Tour. The video game’s sales decline also was exacerbated, they said, because last year’s version sold exceptionally well – benefiting from its bundling with a new Wii controller. Consumers bought more than 2.3 million copies of the game in 2009.
Meanwhile, Sports Illustrated’s annual analysis of the highest-earning American athletes still ranked Woods No. 1. But his estimated total earnings of more than $90 million dropped 30 percent from nearly $128 million two years ago. Woods’ endorsements alone declined $22 million from a year ago and are estimated to be $70 million.
Phil Mickelson ranked No. 2 in total earnings with more than $61 million, of which $52 million was attributed to endorsements.