Tennis sensation Maria Sharapova lives a very sweet life. And it has nothing to do with her current tennis ranking (number two in the world) or the 27 World Tennis Association singles titles, including four Grand Slams, that she’s won throughout her career. The 25-year-old athlete recently spent $500,000 to launch her own gourmet gummy candy line called Sugarpova.
Sharapova’s brightly-colored gummies with playfully named flavors such as Smitten Sour, Quirky, and Sporty, are sold at various retailers including Macy’s, Henri Bendel, Selfridges in London and Colette in Paris. A bag of Sugarpova’s sweet treats sells for approximately $5.99, about six times the price of gummies made by Haribo, the worldwide gummy market leader.
“We don’t really have a big budget at all for marketing and advertisement,” Sharapova, who owns 100 percent of the company, tells Bloomberg Businessweek. “That hasn’t been our main goal, because I am the face of the project, and I do travel around the world, and people ask me about it.”
Jeff Rubin, the co-founder of Dylan’s Candy Bar, is one of Sharapova’s consultants and says the tennis player is “very, very involved” in the brand. “Less than 24 hours after winning the French Open,” he says, “she was doing final taste tests at the factory in Europe.”