How we compiled the list
To generate the Rio 50 we mined the expertise of some of the leading names from the world of sports marketing, sponsorship, branding, management and academia.
Our eight contributors were invited to nominate sportsmen and women, before whittling down the longlist to just 50, and then ultimately generating the final ranking.
The criteria they judged athletes by were: recognition; popularity; performance credentials; potential at Rio; age; value for money; prominence in home market; reach; room in portfolio for more sponsors; and unique backstory.
Senior Vice President, Olympic Marketing at industry giant IMG Consulting
Insights Director, on behalf of Synergy, the sports and entertainment marketing specialists
Andy Sutherden and the Sports Team at global communications agency H+K Strategies
Simon Chadwick, Professor of Sports Enterprise at Salford University and respected industry thinker
Pitch Marketing Group
Award-winning sports sponsorship and public relations agency
Managing Director of Brand Finance, the independent brand valuation consultancy
Head of Athlete Management at sports and entertainment agency M&C Saatchi Merlin
Director of international sports marketing agency SportQuake