Katie Ledecky

50 Most Marketable 2018 - Katie Ledecky

American, 21, Swimming

Swimming's unstoppable force charging towards Tokyo

Representatives: Wasserman

Key partners: TYR Sport

Katie Ledecky might already boast 14 world championships and five Olympic gold medals, but the 21-year-old swimmer is just getting started. There is perhaps no more dominant female athlete currently competing in world sport; Ledecky doesn’t so much beat her opponents as crush them.

In the wake of her record-breaking Rio 2016, Ledecky appeared alongside Michael Phelps on the cover of Sports Illustrated, but with her compatriot now out of the picture, Ledecky will be front and centre of almost every Team USA marketing campaign in the run-up to Tokyo 2020. The only question there will be is whether Ledecky can break the records she continues to set.

Having opted to forgo her last two seasons at Stanford to turn professional, Ledecky has released herself from the shackles of NCAA rules forbidding college athletes from signing individual sponsorships, paving the way for the American to cash in on her sensational early career success. Snapped up earlier this year by Wasserman, Ledecky kickstarted that commercial journey by penning a US$7 million deal with TYR Sport, in what was described as one of the most lucrative endorsements in the history of swimming. With an Olympic Games on the horizon, more will surely follow. SC

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