Phelps' Quest for the Gold Is Just Beginning

Marketing the Olympic swimming star could bring $100M
By Jim O'Neill,  Newser User
Posted Aug 18, 2008 10:32 AM CDT
This combination of photos shows United States' Michael Phelps holding each of his eight gold medals.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Even before Michael Phelps dove into the pool in pursuit of his eighth gold medal, another epic task had begun: Turning the swimming star into a marketing icon. By the time he’d collected his final piece of gold—along with a $1 million bonus from Speedo—the 23-year-old was well on his way to an Olympic-sized payday, reports the Wall Street Journal.

Phelps has offers on deals ranging from dog food endorsements to movies to bobblehead dolls and tuxedos. He’s been offered free pizza for a year, dental work, and has had more than a few inquiries from female Phelps Phans. The value of his eight golds? "I'd say $100 million over the course of his lifetime," says his agent, who's fielding an average of 50 calls a day.