几周前传出消息，美国高尔夫巨星泰格•伍兹已与一家日本厂商签订代言合同，将赴日本代言一款跌打药膏。这让人不由得想起电影《迷失东京》（Lost in Translation），它说的就是一个过气的美国电视明星赴东京淘金的故事；它又让我们想到美剧《明星伙伴》（Entourage）的某一集里，男主角文森特•切兹因为手头紧，只好到中国拍了一支功能饮料广告。
这一数字与两年前相比有了巨大的下降。吉列、埃森哲、豪雅手表（Tag Heuer）和佳得乐（Gatorade）等大品牌在性丑闻案后纷纷抛弃了伍兹，现在伍兹的广告大客户就只剩下三个：耐克（Nike）、电子艺界（Electronic Arts）和日本兴和株氏会社。电子艺界公司出品的游戏《泰格伍兹职业高尔夫巡回赛12》（Tiger Woods PGA Tour '12），首日上架便创下了22.5万份拷贝的销量纪录。不过据我们的消息人士称，伍兹代言耐克的费用也在2010年下跌了50%（从2009年的2，000万美元下跌到2010年的1，000万美元），理由是耐克决定对伍兹的不检点行为进行惩罚，故而连续两年罚扣他的部分代言费用。不过耐克并未对此事进行评论。
（伍兹捅出这么大的篓子，）耐克却只是重新修订了与伍兹的合同，暂时削减了他的代言收入，这可能让人难以相信。不过贝克街广告公司（Baker Street Advertising）的鲍伯•多夫曼表示：“这并没有什么好奇怪的。他们不会完全放他走，因为那不是他们做事情的方式。不过（削减代言费）完全不会让我感到意外。”
多夫曼估计伍兹此次为兴和万特力代言的费用大概在400万美元上下。而伯恩斯娱乐与体育营销公司（Burns Entertainment & Sports Marketing）的道格•沙伯曼则认为，这份代言合同的价值大概在300万美元左右。
伍兹的另一项收入来源，也就是比赛的奖金，但这笔收入无疑也出现了严重缩水。伍兹在2009年没有赢得任何大型比赛，这还是2004年以来的头一遭。此后伍兹的表现更是一落千丈。他在2010年没有赢得任何赛事，今年到目前为止，由于遭受膝伤，伍兹已经错过了美国公开赛（the U.S. Open）、AT&T全国赛（AT&T National）和英国公开赛（British Open）。据美国职业高尔夫巡回赛（the PGA Tour）的官网统计，今年到目前为止，伍兹的奖金收入共为571,363美元，和2007年的1，090万美元，2008年的580万美元和2009年的1，050万美元相比，这点钱只不过是个零头。在2010年，伍兹的奖金收入降到了130万美元。
伍兹现在仍然年轻，而且毫无疑问，他也是仍然在世的最伟大的高尔夫球手之一。不过由于他一直不在状态，他的资金流也要断链了。与此同时，他的“泰格伍兹迪拜”高尔夫球场项目（Tiger Woods Dubai）也在今年二月停工。这个项目是高尔夫球场、高价房地产和高档餐厅的合体，原本定于2009年开业，不过现在已经成了“烂尾楼”。
When news broke a few weeks ago that Tiger Woods had signed an endorsement deal to hawk a heat rub in Japan, it was hard not to think of Lost in Translation, or of the Entourage episode when Vincent Chase goes to China to do an energy drink commercial because he's out of money.
Although Woods was likely paid in the single-digit millions for the spot -- in which he takes a swing, rubs his back, and says, "Go Vantelin!" -- it's a far cry from campaigns for PepsiCo (PEP), Gillette, and Accenture (ACN). The last time Woods showed up in Japanese TV ads was in 1997, when he promoted Asahi Wonda coffee, back before he became a phenomenon. So the deal with Kowa (maker of the rub) seems more like a moment of desperation than a return to form.
It's no secret that Woods, once king of the sports world, has suffered financially since his fall from grace. His endorsement list shrank and his marriage ended in a divorce settlement reportedly worth $100 million. But now he may actually be hurting for funds. At the very least, there are signs that he isn't generating enough to comfortably cover his costs.
Earlier this week, the golfer's agent, Mark Steinberg, announced he would be joining the agency Excel Sports. Although that means Excel gets Woods too, the icon was conspicuously absent from the announcement. Steinberg left IMG at the end of May. It took two weeks, but on June 7, Woods announced via Twitter that he would be leaving with Steinberg.
IMG declined to comment on the details of Steinberg's departure, or on Tiger Woods, but a trusted Fortune source with reliable information tells us that IMG was none too broken up about losing Woods, because his endorsement earnings have fallen so dramatically. The source says IMG's commissions for 2011 -- they'll continue to get a chunk of Tiger's endorsement deals through 2013 -- will be as low as $1.5 million.
That's a huge drop from two years ago. With giants like Gillette, Accenture, Tag Heuer, and Gatorade having jumped ship, Tiger's major deals are down to three: Nike (NKE), Electronic Arts (ERTS), and Kowa. His EA Sports video game, Tiger Woods PGA Tour '12, set a first-week franchise record of 225,000 games sold. But our source also tells us that Tiger's Nike money fell by as much as 50% in 2010 (to about $10 million, down from $20 million in 2009) and that he will get the same reduced amount for 2011. The reason? Nike penalized him for his indiscretions, reducing his payment for two years as a response to his public behavior. Nike had no comment.
That Nike would have renegotiated Tiger's contract to give him a temporary pay cut may be hard to believe, but Bob Dorfman of Baker Street Advertising says, "That's not surprising. They're not going to release him entirely, because that's not the way they are, but [a pay reduction] would not surprise me at all."
As for the Kowa deal, Dorfman estimates its value at $4 million. Doug Shabelman of Burns Entertainment & Sports Marketing believes it's worth around $3 million.
Recent valuations of Tiger's overall endorsement earnings for 2011 have been between $60 million and $75 million. But based on our information about Nike, and on the Kowa estimates, the real number is likely closer to $20 million.
Woods' agent adamantly denies the assertion that the golfer is facing financial strain. "Tiger Woods is financially sound and strong, contrary to wide-ranging rumors and inaccurate figures in the media," Steinberg wrote in an email. "Stating anything else is incorrect and factually baseless."
The Woods P&L
Another factor that has undeniably fizzled is Tiger's tournament winnings. Woods won no majors in 2009, the first year that's happened since 2004. He went completely winless in 2010, and this year he's so far missed the U.S. Open, AT&T National, and British Open due to a knee injury. According to the PGA Tour website, Tiger's 2011 winnings so far total $571,363. Those are like pennies compared to the $10.9 million, $5.8 million, and $10.5 million he earned in 2007, 2008, and 2009, respectively. In 2010, that dropped to $1.3 million.
Woods is still young, and undoubtedly one of the greatest golfers alive, but as he continues to stay off the links, that money stream dries up. Meanwhile, Tiger Woods Dubai, a billion-dollar project that was first set to open in 2009 with a golf course, pricey real estate, and restaurant, was scrapped in February.
As Tiger's revenues have declined, his expenses have only climbed. To begin with, there's the reported $100 million divorce settlement. And last August, Woods took out a $54.5 million mortgage on his home in Jupiter Island, Florida. According to the public document, Woods is required to pay off the mortgage in full by January of 2016, giving him a mere five and a half years to shed the debt. He's therefore paying more than $10 million each year, including his $431,042 in annual property taxes.
That 2010 property tax information comes from the district offices of Martin County, FL, where the home Woods now occupies alone is located. The property, which Woods purchased in 2006 for $44.5 million, is valued at around $47 million (the county values the house at $26.48 million, the land at $20.5 million). His 2010 improvements to the dwelling and the property cost him $6 million, including three separate residential pools, a tennis court, a golf green with a few holes, an elevator, and a 14,736-square foot improvement to the interior of the house -- evidence that Woods is not used to living cheaply. But the pace of his home improvements has slowed, according to online records of the county appraiser's office. So far there have been none in 2011.
Mark Steinberg says simply that there is no debt on Woods' Jupiter Island home, and declined to elaborate. But the Martin County clerk's office confirmed that their records show that the mortgage has not been paid off.
The Jupiter Island mega-mansion isn't the only Woods property. Among others, in 2007 he bought his mother property near his own, in Jupiter Island, for $2.4 million. In 2010, construction on that cost him another $2.6 million. Presumably, it's Woods himself that pays and will continue to pay all taxes on the home.
Between the divorce settlement and his recent mortgage, Tiger has faced recent debts to the tune of at least $160 million, though it's unknown how much of this he has now paid down. His endorsement earnings will not come close to this in 2011, and he's no longer adding much to his pot with golf winnings. Nike's decisive slash to his contract has not helped matters.
"Tiger remains one of the most popular and visible athletes in the world, demonstrated by television ratings, tournament attendance and various empirical polls," Steinberg says. "His endorsement future is strong and any additional partnerships will be announced at the appropriate time."
To fix up his financial short game, Tiger Woods is going to have to start making money again the old-fashioned way: by playing the sport he's known for.