Former world No.1 tennis player Rafael Nadal has left IMG. He will start his own management company with his father and manager.
It has been a big few months in the realm of tennis representation, with No.1 Novak Djokovic joining powerhouse IMG just last week. Roger Federer, who was also previously managed by IMG, left with agent Tony Godsick in June of this year to form his own agency.
While there has been widespread speculation that Andy Murray is in the market for a new agent, he appears to be staying with Simon Fuller at XIX Entertainment. Both Lagardere and IMG have tried to sign him, but to no avail.
Nadal currently holds a lucrative deal with Nike, estimated to be at around $7 million per year. He earns an estimated $8 million from other sponsors including Bacardi and Armani. It is unknown when his Nike contract is up for renewal.
While the timing of the move may suggest the exit is a backlash for IMG signing Djokovic, this is not the case. Nadal and Federer were successfully managed by IMG for many years, and any animosity towards the signing of Djokovic would have lead Nadal to sign for a rival firm as opposed to taking the reins of his affairs himself.