Online poker giant PokerStars has signed Brazilian soccer superstar, Neymar Jr. In a fresh, new deal to promote the company.
However, it’s still unclear what role Neymar will play; PokerStars has not identified Neymar Jr. as a brand ambassador. But the global poker giant did say that Neymar was a “perfect fit for PokerStars” and that he would “bring his personality and flair to both the online and live tables, and the PokerStars community around the world.”
It’s a given that Neymar will feature prominently in PokerStars’ new “I’m In” global marketing campaign.
Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior
While not well known to American audiences, Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior, or Neymar for short, is an international soccer superstar. He made his professional debut at the age of 17, and within a few short years, he was named the South American Footballer of the Year twice, in 2011 and 2012.
By scoring 64 goals in 103 matches since age 18, Neymar achieved the title as the second-highest goalscorer for the Brazilian team, trailing only behind soccer legend Pelé.
Neymar Jr ranks among the world’s most prominent athletes; in 2012 and 2013, London-based SportsPro magazine naming him the most marketable athlete in the world. In 2016, ESPN named Neymar as the world’s fourth-most famous athlete.
In 2017, Time magazine included Neymar in its list of the world’s 100 most influential people. And in 2018, Neymar was ranked by France Football as the world’s third highest-paid soccer player. Finally, in 2019, Forbes magazine ranked Neymar as the world’s third highest-paid athlete, and as the fourth highest-paid athlete in 2020. Neymar Jr is estimated to have a net worth of $200 million.
Neymar Jr Loves Playing Poker
“When I’m not playing soccer, I love playing poker,” Neymar said. “Competing against my friends is a big passion of mine. I love the fun, the sense of community, and the unpredictable moments that can happen in any game. As a true poker fan, I’m thrilled to start a new chapter with PokerStars. Together we’ll create moments for our poker community and fans all over the world.”
PokerStars Has a History with Neymar
The Brazilian soccer superstar signed as a brand ambassador with PokerStars five and a half years ago, but that partnership lapsed after two years. The current deal with Neymar is the first time that PokerStars has re-signed a brand ambassador after the original contract had lapsed.
Neymar also represents the first top-tier sports celebrity to sign with PokerStars since Usain Bolt and Kevin Hart signed on three and a half years ago.
Other notable sports stars who have signed on with PokerStars include former Spanish soccer star and sports broadcaster Steve Enríquez and Portuguese soccer player Cristiano Ronaldo.
PokerStars Does Bollywood
While the online poker giant has signed up quite a few international soccer celebrities as brand ambassadors, the roster doesn’t simply include sports.
In May 2019, PokerStars signed beloved Bollywood actor Niwazzudin Siddiqui to star in its advertisements in the Indian market.
“It’s a great pleasure to be associated with PokerStars in India,” said Siddiqui. “For some time now, I’ve been intrigued by poker; I believe it hits the magic balance between being easy to learn yet has the opportunity to increase your knowledge as you master the game. PokerStars is one of the most trusted and popular poker brands in the world thanks to its wide range of games and tournaments, top-level security, excellent 24/7 customer support, and award-winning software. I’m looking forward to improving my poker skill playing with some of the top professional poker players at PokerStars India.”
Former captain of the Indian cricket team, M.S. Dhoni, went on to replace Niwazzudin Siddiqui as a PokerStars India brand ambassador, for it’s ‘I’m In’ campaign.