Naomi Osaka Leaves IMG to Start Own Sports Agency

    • The new agency, EVOLVE, will be launched with agent Stuart Duguid.
    • In 2021, Osaka was the highest-paid female athlete in history, earning $60M.

The world’s highest-paid female athlete is venturing out on her own for representation.

On Wednesday, tennis star Naomi Osaka announced that she and agent Stuart Duguid have left IMG to launch their own sports agency, EVOLVE.

“I’ve spent my career doing things my way, even when people told me that it wasn’t what was expected or traditional. Evolve is the natural next step in my journey as both an athlete and businesswoman,” Osaka said.

The 24-year-old is the first female athlete at her level to attempt to take full control of her business affairs and launch an agency, per Sportico.

Osaka is the highest-paid female athlete in history, having brought in $55 million of her $60 million through endorsements last year. She ranks 12th overall on Forbes’ 2021 list of the world’s highest-paid athletes.

On the court, Osaka most recently withdrew from the Italian Open with an achilles injury but says she’s focused on getting healthy for the start of the French Open on May 15.