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Naomi Osaka Elaborates on her Decision to Invest in Women’s Sports

Naomi Osaka, a prominent figure in the world of sports, is renowned for her achievements as a Japanese tennis player, having won the Grand Slam title four times. Despite spending much of her life in the United States, she remains a prominent representative of Japan. Osaka has been candid about her battles with depression, prompting her to take a hiatus from tennis in 2022. Recently, she made a comeback in Australia following the birth of her first child in July.

During her interview with Bloomberg in Abu Dhabi on February 3, the 26-year-old Naomi Osaka discussed her mental health journey and her aspirations both on and off the tennis court. Renowned for her pioneering efforts, particularly among female athletes, Osaka has made significant investments in various sports ventures. As one of the highest-paid female athletes, she has acquired ownership stakes in soccer and pickleball teams, and has ventured into production and sports management. Reflecting on her recent performance in Australia, Osaka expressed a desire for improvement despite facing formidable opponents. She acknowledges the need to maintain her current level of play and hopes to gain confidence by securing victories against top-ranked players. At present, her focus remains on competing in matches and continuing her journey in the sport.

I often contemplate regaining my position in the world’s top 10 and winning more Grand Slam titles. I ponder the timeframe required to reach my desired level of performance. While my skills are intact, I acknowledge the importance of decision-making during matches, which may require some time to refine. Ideally, I aim to achieve my goals around the French Open and Wimbledon, although reaching them during the U.S. Open remains a possibility. The experience of motherhood has profoundly impacted me, enhancing my mental resilience and fostering a deeper appreciation for life’s intricacies. My recent trip to Australia was emotionally challenging as it marked the first time I traveled without my daughter, Shai. Reflecting on the journey, I felt a sense of sadness as I questioned whether I made the most of my time away from her. Nevertheless, having Shai in my life is a tremendous blessing, and witnessing her growth and development brings me unparalleled joy. I hope to continue being the best mother I can be and provide her with happiness and fulfillment.

Apart from endorsements, Naomi Osaka has made significant investments, including in the North Carolina Courage soccer team. She expresses a strong belief in supporting women’s sports, highlighting her commitment to ventures aligned with her values. Additionally, she embarked on establishing a production company, drawing inspiration from her father’s affinity for storytelling and the presence of cameras in her life. The realization that no other female athlete had initiated such a venture came as a surprise to her. Osaka’s approach is characterized by a willingness to explore uncharted territory and embrace the learning process, even amidst setbacks — a philosophy that has guided her journey.

Expanding on her involvement in women’s sports investment, Naomi explained that witnessing the growth of female sports significantly influenced her decision to invest in the North Carolina Courage. She expressed a genuine passion for soccer, making the investment a natural choice. Regarding pickleball, while it was initially unfamiliar to her, its sudden surge in popularity caught her attention. Learning about the sport and observing figures like LeBron James investing in it further convinced her of its potential and solidified her belief in its viability as a worthwhile investment opportunity.

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