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What does Hermann Maier cost? And how much money is the champion skier carrying around, between ski suit, helmet, skis, bindings, gloves and goggles? Let’s start with a sports fact. Herminator is on the threshold of his 50th win in the World Cup, a record which puts him up there beside Italy’s Alberto Tomba. But the Austrian also holds another record. Hermann is not so young any more, but he’s still one of the leading Alpine skiing personalities able to attract a pool of the richest sponsors. In 2000, at the apex of his career, his image was worth the breathtaking sum of € 5 million. Now on the way down, today he’s worth “only” € 2.5 million.

If we look at the details, Maier’s main personal sponsor is the Raiffesen bank, whose name appears on his black and yellow helmet for a sum said to amount to € 500,000 euros a season. Still in Austria, the Raiffesen group has made him the chief actor in a multi-faceted campaign, which earns him yet more money.

His major contract is with Atomic (skis and bindings) for a sum close to € 800,000 euros a season. If he wins a world title or an Olympic medal he automatically gets a bonus of around € 500,000.

Carrera gives Herminator another € 200,000 for wearing their goggles and helmet. The multinational company has also marketed a kind of goggles re-christened “Herminator”, to celebrate the Austrian champion’s wins in downhill ski racing.

The remaining sponsors ( limited only because all the available body surface has been used up) are Leki (poles), Lange (boots) and Reusch (gloves). Thanks to his enormous popularity, the Fancy sport-marketing company based in Flachau, managers of the Hermann Maier image, have also launched a line of merchandise for ski enthusiasts. All of this via the champion’s official website:

Everything Maier touches has the sound of money. You could say that the “white circus” also has its King Midas…

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