MUMBAI: Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli, with a brand value of $14.5 million, ranks ahead of Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi, in the athletes category of the Forbes Fab 40: The World's Most Valuable Sports Brands 2017 list released on Wednesday.
The Forbes Fab 40 determines the value of the top brands in sports by quantifying the amount by which the name contributes to the value of the athlete, business, event or team. The brand value of athletes is their earnings (excluding salary and bonus from their sport and all investment income), minus the average income of the top 10 athletes in the same sport. Kohli's value puts him ahead of Messi as well as NBA team Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry on the 7th spot in the top 10 list.
Tennis legend Roger Federer leads the list with a brand value of $37.2m followed by NBA star LeBron James ($33.4m) and sprinter Usain Bolt ($27m). Real Madrid’s star striker Cristiano Ronaldo is in the 4th spot with a brand value of $21.5m. Tiger Woods who is not at his peak anymore kept the 6th spot with a brand value of $16.6m.
The Indian Premier League failed to make it into the top 10 list in the events category, that was led by Super Bowl, valued at $663m. The Super Bowl has been the number one event brand for each of Forbes' nine Fab 40 rankings.
Nike, which heads out the business category, has seen its brand value increase nearly four-fold since 2007, to $29.6 billion.
The hottest business brand is however the Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM), worth $2.4 billion.