The International Padel Federation’s (FIP) Premier Padel tour has appointed veteran sports executive Eno Polo as chief executive to lead the competition's development, commercial growth, and global expansion.
Polo, who will begin his new role on November 16, joins from LeDap Group, an international group of padel companies that operate more than 120 clubs, where he worked as chief executive. He currently also sits on the board of directors at the ATP men’s tennis tour.
He has a wide-ranging career in sport, including experience in padel and tennis, with senior roles at sportswear giant NIKE across Europe and North America. Polo also held positions as president of Havaianas EMEA and North America, president of Global Brands Group, and senior consultant to soccer’s world governing body FIFA.
Polo said: “I am delighted to join Premier Padel as CEO to lead – without any doubt – the most exciting project in world sport.
“Through the vision and ambition of the owners, what has been achieved by Premier Padel in such a short time is incredible. But what’s most exciting is that we have barely started to unlock the brilliant potential of this world-leading tour.
“I cannot wait to bring my experience, energy, and leadership to drive Premier Padel forward, working with stakeholders across padel, sport, and business to build something very special for the men’s and women’s professional players – who are our most important constituent – and everyone connected to the fantastic sport of padel.”
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Nasser Al-Khelaifi, chair of Premier Padel, added: “We are very pleased to appoint Eno as chief executive of Premier Padel. Eno brings a wealth of knowledge, experience, and relationships to the tour, having had a fantastic career across sports – including racket sports – for nearly 30 years.
“He understands how to build an elite global tour, and also the importance of players to any project. We look forward to Eno driving forward the next great phase of development of Premier Padel.”
The appointment comes two months after QSI completed its acquisition of rival competition the World Padel Tour (WPT), which it plans to merge with Premier Padel – a move effectively giving the investment fund full ownership of the top-tier echelons of the sport.
The newly combined Premier Padel tour, which will launch next year, will be run by QSI but governed by FIP. Premier Padel’s recently announced women’s tour will be played alongside the men’s competition.
The agreement ended a long-running dispute between the two tours, which started in 2022 when QSI partnered with the FIP and the Professional Padel Association to create Premier Padel as a rival to the pre-existing WPT.
At the time, the FIP claimed Premier Padel would be “the only official tour in the sport of padel” and “the only official tour under the governance and regulation of the FIP.”
The move sparked several lawsuits filed through the Spanish court, with WPT claiming the trio was participating in ‘unfair competition’ for attempting to exclude the WTP from the market and replacing it with the Premier Padel Tour.
It eventually suffered setbacks with its case, along with another lawsuit against WPT players participating in Premier Padel.
Premier Padel and WPT agreed to begin collaboration talks in January, which led to the merging of the two tours.