Tiger's Successful Comeback Leads to Jump in Wealth
THANKS in no small part to his incredible comeback season, during which he won his 80th PGA Tour title, seriously contended in two majors and forced his way onto America’s Ryder Cup team, Tiger Woods saw his personal fortune increase by $50m in 2018 according to Forbes.
The 14-time major champion is now worth a mind-blowing $800m and stands ninth in Forbes’ annual list of America’s wealthiest celebrities, alongside best-selling author James Patterson. It is not so very long ago that, with his personal life in tatters, sponsors were abandoning him in droves but he has turned it around in spectacular fashion. Woods has accumulated an incredible $116m in prize money alone during his glittering career and, since turning professional back in 1996 he has made a scarcely-credible $1.5 billion in endorsements, course design and appearance fees. During one 11-year stretch, Tiger was the highest-paid athlete in the world.
His endorsement money comes from a variety of sources including Nike, TaylorMade, Bridgestone, Monster Energy, and Hero MotoCorp, which sponsors the annual event that Tiger hosts every December in the Bahamas. Another business venture that is sure to increase Tiger’s net worth is his new partnership with GolfTV, which is Discovery Channel’s over-the-top (OTT) streaming service that is set to launch in January. Woods signed the multi-year content deal with Discovery earlier this fall. Some of the content will include weekly instructional videos from Woods himself.
He is also increasingly focusing his attention on course design and is making a name for himself in that field as he attempts to create courses that people actually want to play.
Woods knows that 2019 will be an important year for him. Now 43 years old, can he continue the amazing progress we saw throughout the 2018 season, when he led The Open on the final day and gave Brooks Koepka the fright of his life at the US PGA Championship?
He qualified for the Tournament of Champions but was one of three players to give it a miss, the others being Phil Mickelson and Justin Rose. By his own admission, he played rather more competitive golf than he had planned to and knows that he will have to manage his schedule carefully if he is to keep himself fit.
Woods qualified for the event by winning the Tour Championship in September — his first victory since 2013. The win at East Lake capped an epic comeback season for Woods, who returned to competitive play at the 2017 Hero World Challenge, after a 10-month layoff following spinal fusion surgery. Expectations were low but he ended up playing in 18 tournaments on the PGA Tour, missing just two cuts and finishing in the top 10 on seven occasions, including two runner-up finishes.
He normally kicks off his season at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines — a course upon which he has won eight times. It was there where he won the most recent of his 14 majors, the 2008 US Open.
“I’m not going to play as many [events] as I did this year,” Woods said. “I played in too many this year, and that was from adding an event because I missed the cut at [the Genesis Open] to qualifying to get into Akron [the Bridgestone Invitational]. Who knew that I could make it through all the playoff events? So all those events took a toll. I won’t be playing as much as I did [in 2018].”
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