Are you a walking billboard? Christiano Ronaldo certainly is one – and an expensive one at that – so a simple act of moving the bottles of a branded drink out of shot at a press conference managed to wipe as much as four billion dollars off the share price of the company! If you watch the footage concerned, several points might strike you as to the absurdity of his gesture, and the fickleness of the stock market.
Perhaps the actions of the football megastar were not as innocent or as well-meaning as they might first appear. After all, Ronaldo is covered from head to toe in a branded tracksuit, and almost the entire frame is filled with hundreds of repeated logos of the various sponsors of the football contest he is giving a press conference about. No doubt there are some very specific mathematical formulas involved in how much each of these companies paid to have their logos displayed corresponding to how many times their logos appear and in what order, but these brands are apparently of no concern to Ronaldo. Why is that? Could it be because he has his already sold his name and image to more than thirty different companies in celebrity endorsements, making him one of the richest people, and athletes, in the world?
Surely this is just being cynical, some might argue. Ronaldo cares about his fans’ health and wellbeing, they might claim. If that’s the case, it might be hard to explain the past and current sponsorship deals that he has had with fast food companies, supplement manufacturers, and of course, a drinks company that is a rival to the one whose bottles he moved off camera. So, no, none of this is unexpected. A celebrity sells themselves to the highest bidder as a walking billboard, and the stock market, based as much on speculation as it is on hot air, continues to move up and down erratically. The more useful question might be: What is the name of the bottled water company that Ronaldo will receive millions of dollars to endorse next?