Padel Vs. Pickleball’s Lucrative Prospects


Padel and pickleball are gaining momentum rapidly. While tennis remains the crown jewel of racket sports, these emerging sports carved out their respective niches, flourishing and growing toward igniting a racket revolution.  

In 2022, pickleball was recognized as the fastest-growing game in America. At the same time, Padel solidified its status as the fastest-growing sport globally.

Click here for a closer examination with Forbes Online Business magazine of both sports’ strengths and market opportunities.

Padel and Pickleball’s Origins

Padel and Pickleball may seem like variations of an already established sport like Tennis, but the difference is far and wide.

Padel was designed by Enrique Corcuera in 1969 in his backyard in Mexico. Padel drew inspiration from Platform Tennis, to which Corcuera added walls enclosing the court. It quickly spread to Argentina and Spain. The first World Championship was held in 1992.

Pickleball was a backyard game invented in 1965 on Bainbridge Island, Washington, by three American dads for their children’s enjoyment.

Business Ecosystems in Racket Sports

New Padel courts are popping up everywhere, and celebrity enthusiasm is at an all-time high, amplifying racket sports’ appeal to the old and the young.

What is more, if you strive for long-term success, field experts report that Padel’s global appeal and promising growth trajectory present extensive business avenues. Deloitte’s UK sports investment outlook for 2024 suggested that new businesses capable of disrupting the status quo may emerge if Padel’s rise to popularity is backed by robust strategies. Additionally, it reports that European investors may be looking to “deploy capital across expanding sports such as Padel.”

Pickleball’s ease of play offers an opportunity for investors to add its courts in any club, which opens up the door for North American sports centers to turn into multi-sport facilities and international small businesses to use their expertise from other racket sports, such as Padel for pickleball purposes.

That is to say, if Pickleball’s popularity can be translated to international markets, the North American racket market will have the most lucrative business opportunity in its palms.

Padel and Pickleball’s Global Reach

The Global Padel Report and the FIP report that 25 million people play Padel in 130 countries across five continents. The Global Padel Report also details that the entire Padel industry’s value has reached 2 billion euros and is predicted to triple in value (6 billion euros) by 2026. These numbers are a direct result of Padel’s popularity and monopoly over the European and Latin American continents.

Its potential for expansion in other untapped markets presents a huge opportunity for business leaders.

Although not as widely known as Padel, the APP’s 2023 report revealed that Pickleball is actively played by 8.5 million people in North America. While primarily concentrated in North America, it has shown promising growth in other regions, opening doors for businesses to explore new markets and leverage their expertise from other racket sports.

Padel and Pickleball are compelling opportunities for investors and entrepreneurs interested in racket sports. While Padel’s global popularity, diverse business ecosystem, and long-term growth potential position it as a highly promising investment, pickleball’s accessibility and potential for international expansion offer unique opportunities for businesses already invested in the Padel ecosystem.

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