Contract negotiations are fairly difficult when you don’t have any experience. That is why Sport Legacy assists clients during their contract negotiations. Athletes get offered multiple contracts during their career varying from labour contracts to endorsement contracts. But where to focus on during these negotiations?
Here are some key factors that athletes should consider when negotiating an endorsement agreement, including:
- how best to structure the term and financials of the agreement;
- awareness of potential commercial restrictions owed to third parties;
- how to limit any impact on an athlete’s sporting commitments;
- how to control use of an athlete’s image;
- and issues arising when an endorsement ends or is suspended.
Most athletes only have a broker that helps them when transferring between clubs. In this case the broker will take care of the contract for the athlete, but for all other contracts athletes are supposed to figure it out on their own.
Sport Legacy guides the client through these negotiations whether they are a direct result from our efforts or otherwise.
Match Contracts with Image
Professional athletes have recently focused on the importance (or lack thereof) of sport agent representation in contract negotiations.
The financial rewards available to professional athletes from entering into brand endorsements are extensive. However, whilst the amount of the fee and identity of the brand is inherently important to any athlete’s decision to enter into an endorsement, athletes also need to bear in mind the impact that their endorsements and other commercial activities may have on aspects of their life other than their bank balance.
Case Study: Richard Sherman’s failed attempt
Cornerback Richard Sherman negotiated a contract in 2018 with the San Francisco 49ers on his own, without the benefit of an agent, and boasted that no one could have done a better job, declaring to FOX Business that “I can get all the information that I need, so an agent is becoming an unnecessary commodity.”
Well, it turned out that there was widespread criticism of the amount of money he received as a free agent, and the National Football League Players Association reportedly had to step in and renegotiate terms in the already-completed contract to better protect Sherman.