(REUTERS) - Hideki Matsuyama's historic victory at the Masters on Sunday could be worth US$20 million (S$26.8 million) per year in endorsements, a sports marketing expert told Sportico for a story published on Monday (April 12).
Bob Dorfman told Sportico that Matsuyama, the first Japanese player to win a men's golf Major, could earn US$600 million in endorsements, in total, over the rest of his life.
"Barring any career-ending injury or scandal, I'd say a Masters win is easily worth US$600 million for Matsuyama," Dorfman of Baker Street Advertising told Sportico.
"He'll be an icon in his golf-mad country."
Matsuyama, 29, won the Masters by one stroke over Will Zalatoris.
He earned US$2.07 million for the win.
Matsuyama was also the first Japanese amateur to play at the Masters in 2011.
"The Masters win is a game-changer," Bill Sanders told Sportico.
"Japan has a long history of endorsement deals with Hollywood actors and athletes. The upside might be limited in the US, but it should be an enormous windfall in Japan."
Sanders, who managed the marketing career of Chinese basketball star Yao Ming, downplayed the language barrier of Matsuyama.
"English doesn't really matter for a full page ad in GQ," Sanders said.
Matsuyama has career earnings of US$33.3 million on the golf course since turning pro in 2013.