Stella Artois today gave British tennis a huge boost by announcing a new agreement, worth £10 million, with the LTA to continue its sponsorship of the Stella Artois Championships for a further five years.
The deal guarantees that the world’s best tennis players will continue to battle it out at the Queen’s Club in London, just prior to Wimbledon, until at least 2009.
Having celebrated the 25th anniversary of the event with record crowds in 2003, the new arrangement, which begins in 2005, will take the Stella Artois Championships into its 31st year.
Callum Mackay, Head of Media and Marketing Services for Interbrew UK, states: ‘I am particularly pleased to have secured this extension to our sponsorship. The evidence is clear that the Stella Artois Championships makes a major contribution to both the performance of the brand and to international mens’ tennis. During the past 25 years, the tournament has established itself as the important form guide to Wimbledon and has helped us drive Stella Artois to the number one Premium Lager in the UK with four in every 10 pints consumed being Stella Artois.
John Crowther, Chief Executive of the LTA, said: ‘Our partnership with the Stella Artois brand will now extend over 30 years. They have established the tournament as an international event of immense significance for any player aspiring to win The Championships. This new contract will underpin the pre-Wimbledon tournaments and is of vital importance to British tennis’.
Played on grass courts that are regarded by many top players as the best in the world, the Stella Artois Championships are renowned for being the ideal preparation for Wimbledon. John McEnroe, Jimmy Connors, Boris Becker, Pete Sampras and Lleyton Hewitt have all triumphed at the Stella Artois before going on to lift the Wimbledon crown three weeks later.
‘Over the past quarter of a century, the Stella Artois Championships have been able to attract the very best tennis players in the world,’ said Ian Wight, the Tournament Director.
‘The tournament has grown to be regarded as one of the key reference point events in both the international and British tennis calendars. This new agreement gives us the opportunity to continue that development and maintain our appeal to the players and spectators alike.’
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