“Able to Take on a Greater Role”: Maria Sharapova Reveals How Pandemic Helped Her Reap Commercial Success

Published 03/01/2021, 4:35 AM EST
KEY BISCAYNE, FL – MARCH 28: Maria Sharapova of Russia celebrates after she won her match against Samantha Stosur of Australia during the Sony Ericsson Open at Crandon Park Tennis Center on March 28, 2011 in Key Biscayne, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)


Former tennis star Maria Sharapova has opened up on not only garnering success on the business front despite the economic challenges and hardships in a pandemic year, but also expanding her commercial interests into uncharted spaces.

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While successfully piloting her hugely successful and part-eponymous candy line, ‘Sugarpova’, the five-time Grand Slam champion has also ventured into newer areas of business along with her commercial partners.

Maria Sharapova says pandemic gave her time to explore new projects and interests

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In an interview to Create & Cultivate, an online forum for women entrepreneurs, Sharapova said that the pandemic, while giving her more time to “connect with family and friends” and take her pet venture forward, also provided her the scope to explore “new projects and interests”.

The Russian revealed that she also made full use of the opportunity to cultivate some of her interests beyond tennis, such as “food, art and design” and explore untapped business potential through new “connections”.

COLOGNE, GERMANY – JANUARY 31: Maria Sharapova celebrates ‘SUGARPOVA’ chocolate line expansion at ISM trade fair on January 31, 2017 in Cologne, Germany. (Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images)

“I have also been able to take on a greater role with some of my existing partners like Bala and Therabody to help advise creative and strategic direction for each company,” the two-time French Open champion said.

Maria Sharapova says tying with commercial partners has helped her broaden her entrepreneurial scope

Sharapova said pairing up with some of her commercial partners has also helped her broaden the scope of her entrepreneurship. She revealed that she never had time before to explore diverse interests and turn them into business opportunities like she did during the pandemic.

“It’s something that I didn’t have the chance to do before, and I am grateful for it now,” the former Wimbledon champion said.

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Having battled chronic shoulder pain in the latter half of her career, Sharapova decided to bid adieu to tennis on February 26, 2020.

The 33-year-old finished with 36 singles titles, including 5 Grand Slam championship trophies.

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One of the most followed stars in the women’s game in her time, Sharapova won her maiden Grand Slam title, the 2004 Wimbledon, at the age of 17. She became World Number 1 on August 22, 2005.

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Priyabrata Chowdhury

854 articles

Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.

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