Cori “Coco” Gauff is the 2023 US Open tennis champ. She is also a $10 million young woman.
Turning pro at the tender age of 14 in 2018, she steadily and swiftly has risen to become a dominant force on and off the court. With a recent victory of a 2-6, 6-3, 6-2 win over the world’s No. 1 Aryna Sabalenka in the US Open women’s singles final on Sept. 9, Gauff, now 19, is working her way to GOAT status. This latest win netted her a $3 million check.
Living Debt Free
When asked by a fan during a TikTok live session what she was going to do with her winnings, Gauff noted that while she wasn’t sure yet, it definitely would not be going to pay off debts.
“I’m 19; I don’t have any debt. I still live with my parents, so I’m not in debt,” she answered. “I didn’t go to college, so I don’t have any student bills to pay. I’m too young; my parents never put me in that position to be in debt, so I have nothing to pay right now.”
Gauff’s ascent began when she was just 15 years old when, in 2019, she made headlines by reaching the quarterfinals of both the French Open and Wimbledon.
But Gauff’s success isn’t confined to the tennis court. But because of her winning tennis skills, she has become a sought-after figure in the endorsement arena, and she is also stacking up a business portfolio.
She may be young, but seems to have a savvy business acumen. She has invested in various ventures, including a tech startup and a clothing line. She also co-founded an NGO focused on providing educational opportunities to African children.
Building a Fortune
In 2023 alone, Gauff earned a substantial $1,237,640 in prize money from various tournaments. This marked her highest earnings in a single year to date. So far, she has amassed a prize money total of $5.6 million for the year, and $11.1 million in her five-year professional career.
Partnerships with brands such as New Balance, Barilla and Head collectively have added millions of dollars to her net worth.
Gauff, who has the support of her talent agency Team8 and her parents—father Corey, who coached her, and mother Candi –has amassed an estimated $12 million from endorsements, appearance fees and other business endeavors over the past 12 months, and is currently ranked No. 7 on Forbes’ list of the highest-paid tennis players.
On The Way Up
The US Open win marked her first Grand Slam title — after she fell one match short at the 2022 French Open.
While it seems to have been a fast ride for Gauff, she’s been working toward her wins for a long time.
Although Coco’s father initially hoped she would follow in his basketball footsteps, at the age of six she was inspired by Serena Williams‘ victory in the 2009 Australian Open. By seven, her family moved from Atlanta to Delray Beach, where she has since been coached by Patrick Mouratoglou, who also works with Williams.
Gauff realizes she has her doubters, and in her post U.S. Open interview, she thanked her haters.
“Thank you to the people who didn’t believe in me,” Gauff said. “To those who thought they were putting water on my fire, you were really adding gas to it. “Now I’m really burning so bright right now.”