This past weekend, Eliud Kipchoge made some more history after becoming the first man to win the Berlin Marathon five times. The world record holder is widely acknowledged as the greatest marathoner of all time, having crushed the competition in marathons around the world in addition to being the first man to run a sub-2 hour marathon.
Off the track, Kipchoge has managed to leverage his sporting success for financial fortune. Over the past few years in particular, he has been sealing multi-million shilling deals when not racing.
In this article, Business Today looks at five major deals signed by the ‘G.O.A.T’.
While Nike has been a long term partner of Kipchoge, it rolled out its biggest collaboration with the athlete in early September, as Kipchoge prepared for the Berlin Marathon. Nike and Kipchoge partnered to launch a collection of footwear and apparel dubbed the EK Umoja collection.
Athletes partnering with Nike for their own collections are typically entitled to a share of sales, making it an extremely lucrative venture for Kipchoge. The shoes and apparel feature various inscriptions tied to Kipchoge’s legendary career including race winning times and his famous ‘No human is limited’ mantra.
“Umoja stands for unity. This collection represents the work done together as a running family and community,” Kipchoge stated following the collection’s launch.
In January 2023, Kipchoge sealed a lucrative deal with Tecno, one of Kenya’s most popular smartphone brands. He was unveiled as the brand ambassador for the Tecno Phantom X2, a flagship device for the Transsion-owned brand.
Kipchoge welcomed the partnership, talking up Tecno’s innovation. He also cited the use of recyclable materials in the phone’s development, reiterating his oft-stated commitment to environmental conservation.
In May 2023, Kipchoge and vehicle manufacturer Isuzu expanded their long-standing partnership with the launch of the special limited edition Isuzu D-Max truck.
The limited edition pickup truck features an inscription referencing his 1:59 marathon and only comes in desert orange. Only 159 such vehicles were created, with each costing Ksh9 million. Kipchoge himself drove home the first one.
“It immortalises Eliud as the greatest of all time, Kenyan spirit and everybody’s capabilities that are unlimited,” stated Isuzu General Marketing Manager Kevin Ochieng’.
Huawei, one of the world’s most important technology companies, in July last year announced a partnership with Kipchoge. The campaign is geared at promoting innovation, inspiring youth and encouraging values of perseverance.
Announcing the campaign, Kipchoge stated; “We persevere in training to get better as we all have our ups and downs. With dedication, we become more innovative getting better each day individually and collectively. With perseverance, dedication and agility, we can pursue our goals and become champions in our worlds.”
Huawei executives participating in the campaign broke down their rise in their corporate world and what it took, as well as their goals including inspiring Kenyan youth, women and girls.
Kipchoge in June 2023 was unveiled by Mozilla as the brand ambassador for the Mozilla Africa Mradi Program.
The partnership is intended to promote a culture of reading among Kenyan youth through Pocket, in line with Kipchoge Foundation’s stated mission to promote access to education in underprivileged communities.
Kipchoge said: “My foundation works in areas of health, environment and education. We have set-up a library in Nandi County where we have equipped books that our local youth can access.”
“Pocket will be very useful to our local youth in Nandi as they can come and access the internet at the library, download educational materials and access this information when they go back home where they have no internet access.”