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Tiger Woods ends $600m Nike deal after 27 years: inside the historic contract and his billion-dollar net worth

The 15-time major golf champion was 20 when he first struck a $40 million deal with the legendary sports brand in 1996

Tiger Woods reacts after beating John Daly in a playoff during the final round of The World Golf Championships 2005 American Express Championship at Harding Park Golf Club in San Francisco
Beatriz Colon
Beatriz Colon - New York
Online News WriterNew York
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Tiger Woods' longest relationship – his nearly three-decade partnership with Nike, that is – has officially come to an end.

The golf icon, 48, has been repping the legendary sports brand on the course for 27 years, putting Nike behind two of the most successful sports collaborations in history: Tiger's endorsement, and their billion-dollar-making Air Jordan deal with NBA superstar Michael Jordan.

Both the 15-time major champion and Nike held on to the once record-breaking sponsorship even after their own respective tumbles; from the professional backlash Tiger faced after his headline-making affair on ex-wife Elin Nordegren, through even Nike's termination of their golf equipment market.

WATCH: Tiger Woods shares sweet moment with mini-me son on the golf course

In a statement shared on X, formerly known as Twitter, announcing the split, Tiger wrote: "Over 27 years ago, I was fortunate to start a partnership with one of the most iconic brands in the world."

He recalled: "The days have been filled with so many amazing moments and memories, if I started naming them, I could go on forever."

The sports duo's first contract in 1996 was for a reported $40 million, though when it was renewed in 2001, they upped the deal to a then history-making $100 million. After 27 years, the deal comes to an end with a reported lifetime value of over $600 million.

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Moreover, Tiger is one of only three professional athletes to have a billion-dollar net worth. In 2014, Jordan, who according to Forbes is worth $3 billion, became the first to do so, followed by Tiger, who has a net worth of $1.1 billion, and LeBron James, who is worth one billion.

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Further in his announcement, Tiger went on to shout out Nike co-founder Phil Knight, whose story about the makings of the Jordan brand was just told in the Golden Globe-nominated film Air, from Ben Affleck and Matt Damon. 

Tiger Woods and Nike co-founder Phil Knight attend the Tiger Woods Foundation's 20th Anniversary Celebration at the New York Public Library on October 20, 2016 in New York City© Getty
Tiger and the Nike co-founder in 2016

He wrote: "Phil Knight's passion and vision brought this Nike and Nike Golf partnership together and I want to personally thank him, along with the Nike employees and incredible athletes I have had the pleasure of working with along the way."

Tiger, who has had a tumultuous past two years after his 2021 car crash and subsequent surgeries, concluded with: "People will ask if there is another chapter," maintaining: "Yes! There will certainly be another chapter!"

Tiger Woods of the United States on his way to his first professional golf tournament win at the PGA Las Vegas Invitational on 5th October 1996© Getty
The golf star, pictured above in 1996, was 20 when he first partnered with Nike

Though he is in the midst of a comeback, it's unclear whether Tiger will find a new brand to rep prior to a potential retirement. Though he did continue to don the Nike brand after having to switch golf clubs following the 2016 closing of their golf gear line, in the wake of his car crash, he has been spotted sporting Foot-Joy shoes on the course instead, which he attributed to new needs for his injuries.

MORE: Tiger Woods' ex-girlfriend is suing him for $30million over the home they shared with his two kids

Tiger Woods of the United States walks on the first green during the final round of the Hero World Challenge at Albany Golf Course on December 03, 2023 in Nassau, Bahamas.© Getty
The 27-year deal is one of sports history's most prominent endorsements

Nike, sharing their own statement on Instagram, shared a photo of their star ambassador with the message: "It was a hell of a round, Tiger."

The caption further read: "Tiger, you challenged your competition, stereotypes, conventions, the old school way of thinking. You challenged the entire institution of golf. You challenged us. And most of all, yourself. And for that challenge we're grateful."

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