Hailing from Russia, Maria Sharapova was only six years old when she moved to the United States to continue her tennis training in Florida. After turning pro, Sharapova started winning big in 2003 and gained fans and popularity, winning Grand Slam titles and WTA Championships. For eleven years in a row during her active tennis career, Maria Sharapova was the highest-paid female athlete in the world. Along with her grand slam earrings, she received large paychecks for her brand endorsements and business ventures, leading to a $180 million fortune. In 2012, Sharapova invested $500,000 in creating a candy brand Sugarpova that sold a variety of confectionery.
Today, Sugarpova makes over $20 million in annual earnings and has a net worth of over $195 million. As the tennis star is the company’s sole owner, a sizable portion of the profits is earned by her. What began as a simple dream to build a company due to Maria Sharapova’s love for candy has grown into a multi-million dollar brand. Let’s take a look at how she grew her candy company Sugarpova.
One of the essential parts of starting a business is having a passion for it, and Maria Sharapova has had a sweet tooth since she was a child. She has detailed on many occasions that lollipop candies were her incentive after a good day’s practice on the tennis court. As a candy addict, she decided to launch a range of fifteen of her favorite candy varieties at once to grow a market for her brand.
Sharapova wanted to bring the same essence to her candy company as a symbol of classic elegance. With Sugarpova, each product is a classic candy but has been offered in accessible luxury. According to Sugarpova, the company began by selling various gummy candies in multiple shapes, including a tennis ball and the outline of Maria’s lips. However, it made several additions to the response, including chewing gums, chocolate, and truffles.
Maria Sharapova credits her grandmother as an inspiration for her candy company’s launch. The tennis star has reminisced about sitting in her grandmother’s kitchen and watching her bake sweets. She had an unsure vision of the future of Sugarpova after its launch and what the brand would look like 5-10 years later, but she learned and developed the skills required to become an entrepreneur and sell her products.