She’s known as the fastest woman alive, and now Jamaican sprinter Elaine Thompson-Herah will also be known as the face of Puma sneakers. The five-time Olympic champion inked a deal with the sneaker giant earlier this month, just ahead of the World Championships competition that currently is underway.
Puma already has a lifetime deal with the fastest man alive, Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt.
A German sportswear company, Puma has a market valuation of $16.4 billion.
“We are thrilled that Elaine has chosen to join the Puma family,” said Puma CEO Bjørn Gulden in a post on Andi sports management’s Instagram page this month. “With her speed, she embodies everything we stand for as a brand. Elaine ran the second-fastest time in women’s history last year and is only 0.05 seconds off a world record.”
Gulden continued, “She targets the 100-meter world record, and we want to help her achieve that goal with our most innovative performance products.”
In 2012, Bolt, who is now retired from competition, featured in numerous Puma advertisement campaigns. And he has his own Bolt Collection, featuring a range of footwear and accessories.
Thompson-Herah’s deal with Puma came on the heels of her ending a long-time relationship with Nike, which She had worked with throughout her career, starting in 2013.
“Puma just felt like a right fit, a company that has been working with the World’s Fastest Man for decades,” Thompson, 30, said in a press statement. “I’m excited to be a part of an elite group, and I can’t wait to get started. I really want to break the 100-meter world record. The current one has been undefeated for 34 years. Now is the time. I think there’s still a lot I can unleash.”
No word on the value of Puma’s deal with Thompson-Herah, who has an estimated net worth of $4 million. But, according to Forbes, Bolt was receiving more than $10 million annually from Puma.
Thompson-Herah is the first woman ever to win the “double double” of sweeping the gold medals in the 100 meters and the 200 meters in successive Olympic Games, which she did by winning both short sprints at the 2016 Rio Olympics and in last year’s Tokyo Olympics.
In 2021, she made history when she was confirmed the fastest woman alive while competing at the Prefontaine Classic in Eugene, Oregon. She posted a 10.54 seconds in the 100 meters, just five-hundredths of a second short of the world record by the late American Florence Griffith Joyner.
For all her individual successes in the Olympics, Thompson-Herah’s disappointments in the biennial World Championships — held this year at the Eugene, Oregon, track — continued this past week as she finished third in the 100 meters and a distant seventh in the 200 meter final. Thompson-Herah has never finished higher than silver in an individual event at the World Championships.