A Saudi Arabian offer worth $2 billion to unite tennis’ ATP (men’s) and WTA (women’s) tours has been tabled, according to reports.

The offer, according to UK media, is from the state-backed Public Investment Fund (PIF) and was presented to the heads of the nine ATP Masters 1000 tournaments (the top-tier events on that tour) last weekend, and reportedly has a 90-day expiration date.

The Telegraph newspaper has reported that a Saudi deal with the tours would see the kingdom host a Masters 1000 event in the first week of the annual tennis season, a space currently reserved for the United Cup mixed-gender competition in Australia.

The four tennis grand slam events – Melbourne’s Australian Open, Roland-Garros in France, the Wimbledon Championships in the UK, and the US Open in New York – would not be part of any deal with the PIF. The organizers of that quartet of events are currently engaged in their own talks over a potential revamp of tennis’ main tours, a plan known as the ‘Premium Tour.”

Andrea Gaudenzi, current chief executive of the ATP Tour, is behind the Saudi plan, which would entail the men’s and women’s tours being united under one PIF banner, it has been reported. The proposal deal would also see the men’s ATP end-of-season finals held in Saudi Arabia – the 2024 WTA finals are already expected to take place in that country’s capital, Riyadh.

Indeed, in late February a partnership between the ATP and the PIF was unveiled, through which the fund has become the title sponsor of a host of prominent ATP Masters 1000 events including the Indian Wells Open, Miami Open, Madrid Open, as well as the ATP 500 China Open in Beijing.

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The deal also sees the PIF become the naming partner of the men’s player rankings, which had previously been sponsored by market trading platform Pepperstone.

It has been claimed that Gaudenzi missed this year’s Australian Open in January to travel to Saudi Arabia and hold talks with the PIF.

The ATP was reportedly in talks with the PIF for investment as far back as June 2023, with tour chair Andrea Gaudenzi recently confirming to Sportcal (GlobalData Sport) that he held talks with the Saudi firm about possible co-investments into the tour’s infrastructure, technology, and events (in new markets).

He also stated that the top men’s tennis tour will only seek to raise capital if it provides a “clear plan for growth.”

These latest talks with the PIF come with the ATP and WTA already in discussions over a potential merger – the ATP currently brings in over double the revenue of the WTA.

Last year, the women’s body sold a stake of around 20% of its media rights to the equity fund CVC Capital Partners.

Craig Tiley, chief of Tennis Australia, is reportedly strongly opposed to the Saudi plan, which would see one of the main events in that country replaced by one in the kingdom.