Peter Lim scores with Ronaldo image rights deal

Singapore billionaire Peter Lim's Hong Kong-based firm Mint Media has acquired the image rights of Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo (above), who has endorsements with brands such as Nike, Clear Shampoo and TAG Heuer, to name a few. -- PHOTOS: AG
Singapore billionaire Peter Lim's Hong Kong-based firm Mint Media has acquired the image rights of Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo (above), who has endorsements with brands such as Nike, Clear Shampoo and TAG Heuer, to name a few. -- PHOTOS: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, COURTESY OF PETER LIM
Singapore billionaire Peter Lim's (above) Hong Kong-based firm Mint Media has acquired the image rights of Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo, who has endorsements with brands such as Nike, Clear Shampoo and TAG Heuer, to name a few. -- PHOTOS: AG
Singapore billionaire Peter Lim's (above) Hong Kong-based firm Mint Media has acquired the image rights of Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo, who has endorsements with brands such as Nike, Clear Shampoo and TAG Heuer, to name a few. -- PHOTOS: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, COURTESY OF PETER LIM

FROM shampoo, nutritional supplements, underwear and football boots, to fast food, isotonic drinks and computer game endorsements, superstar Cristiano Ronaldo is in the stratosphere of marketable athletes.

The Portuguese footballer and billionaire Peter Lim jointly announced that the image rights of the Real Madrid forward have been acquired and will be managed by the Singaporean's Hong Kong-based company Mint Media.

The six-year deal for an undisclosed amount was announced yesterday.

Mr Lim, 62, said: "Ronaldo is not just a great soccer player, he is also a very popular personality. I am confident that the Cristiano Ronaldo brand will continue to grow."

Ronaldo, 30, added: "Peter has a valuable and extensive business network and I have always admired Peter's entrepreneurial savvy and his ability to grow businesses. He is also a good friend whom I have known for a while. I believe he will be a good partner and good value-add for my brand."

Ronaldo, who is a three-time Fifa World Player of the Year (2008, 2013 and 2014), is estimated by Forbes to earn US$27 million (S$36.4 million) annually from endorsements.

A Mint Media spokesman said Ronaldo's existing endorsements have been transferred to the company. The player endorses brands like Nike, Clear Shampoo, Konami, TAG Heuer and Herbalife.

"We are seeing a lot of interest from Asian corporates looking to expand their markets into North and South America and Europe, where Ronaldo has a huge following.

"We can expect Ronaldo to make more appearances in Asia in the future," said the spokesman.

In addition, Mint Media is looking to add more sporting stars to its portfolio.

Since 2010, Mr Lim has invited a series of top sports personalities to appear at Singapore Olympic Foundation-Peter Lim Scholarship events, including Ronaldo in 2013. Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton and footballers Nani and Pepe have also visited the Republic to promote the scholarship for promising young Singaporean athletes.

Last October, Mr Lim, estimated by Forbes to be worth US$2 billion, bought Spanish side Valencia for €420 million (S$633 million) and revitalised the ailing club.

Last year, the team finished eighth in La Liga with 49 points but a season later, and with the Singaporean billionaire on board, they ended the campaign in fourth place, earning a Champions League spot after amassing 77 points - an improvement of 28 points.

meng@sph.com.sg

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 30, 2015, with the headline 'Peter Lim scores with Ronaldo image rights deal'. Print Edition | Subscribe