In the first major endorsement deal since his well-documented marital infidelities, Tiger Woods will join forces with Swiss luxury watchmaker Rolex as an ambassador for the brand from January 2012.
In a release, Rolex said it is “convinced that Tiger Woods still has a long career ahead of him” and is “committed to accompanying him in his new challenges.”
It added: “This association pays tribute to the exceptional stature of Tiger Woods and the leading role he plays in forging the sport’s global appeal. It also constitutes a joint commitment to the future. Tiger Woods is joining the family of Rolex ambassadors, who are chosen for their talent, their perseverance and their ability to communicate their passion for their sport.”
While financial details of the deal were not released, it is expected to be worth far less than previous deals signed by the 35-year-old golfer, who is currently ranked 51st in the official PGA world rankings. Prior to damaging reports about his extramarital affairs, Woods was one of the highest-earning athletes in the world, making around US$90 million per year from endorsement deals alone.
But in December 2009, another Swiss watchmaker, Tag Heuer, dropped Woods after the reports surfaced in November that year, while other brands, including AT&T, Gatorade, Gillette and Accenture also ended their multi-million dollar contracts with the former world number one.
Earlier this year, Woods signed a smaller regional endorsement deal with Japanese pain relief brand Vantelin Kowa.