What’s Ronaldo Doing for PokerStars? Added $500m to Nike

February 18, 2017

ronaldo-pokerstarsLast year, PokerStars made bold moves by reducing VIP rewards for high-volume grinders, adding new products, and shifting their focus entirely towards recreational players. The foundation for many of these moves were made in 2015, when Stars began signing footballers like Cristiano Ronaldo.

Poker purists have questioned these moves because, after all, the game is poker. But then again, one also has to think about the international appeal Ronaldo has, and what he can do for Stars in terms of drawing recreational players.

According to HypeBeast and Hookit, Ronaldo generated $500 million in added value for Nike. And the biggest reason why is his massive social media following.

Forbes was kind enough to break down the $500 million figure, which you can see below:

“Ronaldo posted 1,703 times overall on social media in 2016. Those posts generated 2.25 billion social interactions (likes, comments, shares, retweets and views on videos), per Hookit. Nike was referenced or its logo visible in a photo or video in 347 of the posts, which had 477 million interactions. Hookit’s methodology looks at promotion type and quality, as well as interactions and market-driven rates. The result: $499.6 million [USD] for Nike in media value from Ronaldo’s posts.”

Nike signed Ronaldo to a $1 billion lifetime deal last year, and it appears that he’s already made half that back for the company in one year.

We have no idea what PokerStars is paying Ronaldo, but Brazilian footballer Neymar has a €4 million annual deal with the company. Even assuming that Ronaldo’s deal is double or triple this amount, he’ll be bringing PokerStars back a big return thanks to his social media following.

This being said, we can continue to rip the way that poker sponsorships are going. But it’s obvious that Stars will do what’s best for them, and that definitely appears to be having Ronaldo on-board.