Rafael Nadal Takes Branding and Management In-house
epa03517833 File -- File photo shows Spanish Rafael Nadal (L) and Swiss Roger Federer (R) posing to photographers during their match against Swiss Roger Federer at Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 31 December 2011. The tournament organizers announced on 25 December 2012 that 'Rafael Nadal has been forced to make a last-minute withdrawal from the 2012 event due to a stomach virus,' and 'was advised by doctors not to travel or compete due to the illness.' Nadal has not played since June 2012, when he was eliminated in Wimbledon's 2nd round by Czech Lukas Rosol. He was supposed to come back after a successful knee injury rehab. EPA/ALI HAIDER |
Team Nadal has taken another page from the Roger Federer playbook, with the fifth-ranked Spaniard leaving the IMG agency six months after his Swiss rival did the same and setting up an in-house company to market and manage himself and his million-million-dollar fortune.
As Federer did with uber-agent Tony Godsick, Nadal will do with his mate, former Top 10 player Carlos Costa who has served as his manager for some years. While the ex-racquet wielder might not have quite the shark-like commercial smarts of Godsick, Nadal, his uncle-coach Toni and the rest of his family seem to approve the new arrangement.
Costa had also worked with IMG before parting and taking Nadal with him, The advantage of the new set-up is easy: no painful commissions to pay on future commercial deals still to be negotiated. The new Nadal company comprises Costa and Nadal’s father Sebastian.
Nadal will begin his comeback to tennis after seven months out with a knee injury followed by a stomach virus as he plays in three Latin ATP events this month, in Chile, Brazil and Mexico.
Tennis commentators are already making their predictions about his ability to bounce back after so long out of the mix. “I don’t think he necessarily needs time to be Nadal, but I think he needs some time for the other players to think of him as the old Nadal, because I think players lose a lot of respect: not respect for him as a person, but respect for his level,” Mats Wilander told dpa.
Wilander, who won the French Open three times, even ventures that Nada will be an outsider at the French Open this years due to his lack of playing time. “This is the year of and Novak and Andy’s chance to win the French, and Roger’s already won it, but it’s obviously his chance too.”
On the eve of the Rio Open presented by Claro, Rafael Nadal and David Ferrer experienced what it is like to be part of one of the biggest spectacles on earth, the Rio Carnaval. Not even the heavy rain that hit Rio de Janeiro on Sunday stopped the party plans of the top two seeds.
Tennis is a unique and remarkable sport that contains many life lessons. It tests you mentally, physically, and spiritually. Tennis is a sport that confronts you with challenges, situations and choices, and it is up to you how you are going to face them. You need to be willing, have strength, and courage to fight.
Rafael Nadal is back in Rio de Janeiro this week to defend his 2014 title, but he won't be able to steal the entire spotlight away from the other two ongoing tournaments. It is is another jam-packed seven-day stretch in the frantic February swing, with additional action taking place in Marseille and Delray Beach.