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Roger Federer Breaks Partnership With Billion Dollar Worth Italian Brand Days After Coco Gauff’s Stunning Commercial Appearance

Published 04/12/2024, 1:53 PM EDT

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Roger Federer fends off pasta? The tennis legend has unexpectedly chosen to quit his long-standing partnership with the 147-year-old billionaire company Barilla. And the timeline of it all is too interesting to ignore. Only the news comes hot on the heels of Coco Gauff‘s dazzling debut for the same company (just two days later). Apparently, the development that happened months ago was kept all hush-hush!

Beginning her partnership with the Italian brand in 2019, the 2023 US Open champion became the fourth tennis player, after Steffi Graf, Stefan Edberg, and Roger Federer, to have an agreement with the Italian food company. A recent social media post revealed Barilla’s first advertisement featuring Coco Gauff to promote their brand. Two days later, CH Media revealed that Federer had ended his partnership with the company a few months ago.

In 2017, the company embraced Roger’s entry then as a dream come true: “Now this dream has come true,” then-VC Luca Barilla said. Labeling the company “the best” business in the market, in fact, it was a deal that was expected to last a long time, way beyond his retirement: “Barilla pasta and sauces provide the energy that I need to succeed on the tennis court and enjoy my family’s favorite activities. Pasta has been part of my daily diet for so many years that this partnership is a natural,” said Federer in a press release in 2017.

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Interesting fact: Remember the kid fan Zizou who challenged Federer for a match during the 2017 US Open presser? Asking whether Federer would continue playing long enough until he came of age, the video quickly went viral. While Federer gave his word, he couldn’t deliver until five years later when Barilla made that kid’s dream come true. In fact, they arranged a Zurich trip on false pretenses of a training-related tour but instead ensured that Zizou got a once-in-lifetime opportunity to battle it out with his idol on a tennis court.

Federer’s separation from Barilla does raise a lot of questions. Why did it happen? Well, this is something everyone involved is refraining from answering. Per CH Media, all the Barilla representative said was that the company was thankful to Federer for his “professional and human contribution.” Even the 20-time Grand Slam champion’s manager, Tony Godsick, avoided questions. (Translated via Google Translate)

It is noteworthy that after Federer’s departure from the company, who was initially expected to net $40 million during his first year (as reported by Forbes), Barilla has already begun removing his YouTube advertisements. On the other hand, Coco Gauff’s latest advertisement with the brand is making the rounds on the internet. Interestingly, although Federer must have taken a back step here, it should be noted that Gauff, too, comes from Federer’s Team8 management firm.

 

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Interesting fact: Prior to Gauff’s participation in the U.S. Open Tennis Championships on August 23, 2023, the “Serving Love” campaign got underway. The pasta manufacturer, Barilla, gave away free meals to people. It included red lentils and chickpea noodles with just one ingredient and no additives, along with $100 gift cards.

Also read: Roger Federer Firmly Believes That His Heart-Breaking Loss to Rafael Nadal Is the Reason Why Fans Adore Him

And one year after that, Gauff is now one of the leading brand ambassadors for the company. Last year, during the campaign, the 2023 US Open champion declared her favorite pasta during a post-match interview.

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Guess what Coco Gauff’s go-to meal is before she starts swinging the racket, and it is not your regular “long pasta”

After winning the biggest title of her career in 2023, Coco Gauff revealed her go-to meal before the match. While talking about her collaboration with Barilla, she said to Tennis.com, “Before matches, I just go with penne pasta because I don’t like the long pasta before matches because I’m not the cleanest eater; it gets on my kit!.” Coco Gauff has been a lifelong fan of Barilla pasta and admitted that she likes the classic shape of the pasta in either its rigate (lined) or lisce (unlined) variety.

Further continuing her statement about her love for pasta, she added, “As an athlete, pasta is a staple in my diet as it provides the balanced nutrition and functional fuel I need on and off the court.”.

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As Roger Federer waves his final goodbye to the company, a new chapter begins with Gauff’s associations and advertisements with Barilla, a brand she has been associated with since 2019. With Woods’s departure from Nike and now Roger Federer’s departure from Barilla, are brands increasingly moving towards younger talent? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Read more: Coco Gauff’s Excitement Knows No Bounds as Fan Extracts Nostalgic Moment From Her Childhood Involving Venus Williams

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Written by:

Ankita Banerjee

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Ankita Banerjee is a Tennis writer at EssentiallySports. She seamlessly blends her keen interest in writing with an ability to analytically comprehend things. During her college days, she contributed numerous articles to the college magazine, showcasing her early passion.
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Edited by:

Arunima Bhanot