Lexi Thompson

50 Most Marketable 2018 - Lexi Thompson

American, 23, Golf

The LPGA’s big-hitting, long-serving ambassador

Representatives: Blue Giraffe Sports Management

Key partners: Cobra Puma Golf, Bridgestone Golf, Red Bull, Rolex, Lexus, Smucker’s, Zurich Insurance

A recognisable star who always draws a crowd, Lexi Thompson is a tournament director’s dream. Not only is she fifth in the world rankings and the top-ranked American, this long-driving, long-suffering member of the LPGA Tour is a true professional who never shirks an autograph signing, a charity event or a corporate function.

The LPGA’s current commercial momentum, which has been built on a gold-standard sponsorship offering and strong buy-in from its players, is aptly embodied by Thompson’s own rise. Corporate interest in both the organisation and the player is at an all-time high, and while there are signs that the burden she has carried since turning professional at the age of 15 is taking its toll - she skipped the recent Women’s British Open to “recharge my mental batteries” after an emotionally taxing couple of years - her presence on tour only makes the LPGA stronger.

An accessible, articulate presence who regularly interacts with her fans online, Thompson is a walking, talking argument for not differentiating between men’s and women’s golf. She is one of the most marketable names in her sport, full stop - just ask her sponsors. ML

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