Oh, to be John John Florence and to cup the surfing sphere in your pink palm. Mr Florence lands at number one because he owns surfing’s biggest-ever contract. If you wanna make your company look intensely good, then aligning yourself with John is a great place to start. There’s a lot of reasons why, but let’s zoom one very specific occurrence: This week, John John dropped his latest edit, & Again. And as of writing, 20 hours after the fact, the vimeo play count is steaming north of 65k plays with embeds on the URL of every major surf media portal in the world. That sounds like money-can’t-buy representation, but it ain’t: A five-year, $3.2 million per-year contract (totalling $16 million) aligned Hurley with the world’s most marketable surfer right now. And, the acquisition was squeezed onto what was already the world’s largest surfer endorsement program. Worth every penny.
That ain’t his only income though. There’s prize money, of course (three times the amount that’d scrape most family men through the financial year, and that’s with two missed events), and other endorsements. Like Vans, who sponsor the whole Florence brotherhood. Or Monster, who this year fought off a Red Bull push with north of $600k, plus promise of film project support and endorsement of his bros. And, the fact they didn’t demand ownership of John’s precious curls (logo’d caps worn in post-heat interviews are prime real estate in sponsorship world).
But at the very core of John’s appeal, the thing that made him a breath of fresh air on tour and the unorthodox element of the kid that makes him so endearing and accessible: “Not having a coach, and not having anyone to tell me what to do when I surf, that’s been my decision,” John told Stab. He does things his own way and he’s raw. & Again, worth every penny.
Sponsors: Hurley, Monster, Vans, Stance, Spy, Pyzel, Futures
Estimated annual sponsorship earnings: $4.8m
Competition earnings for the last 12 months: $164,250 (missed two WT events)
Total: circa $5m