Category: Associations & Organizations
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Category: Associations & Organizations - Company: ATP
Mercedes-Benz, ATP Extend Partnership Through 2008
Commitment of ATP's pre-eminent partner will span at least 13 years
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Alison S. Kim
11/02/05 - Stuttgart, Germany and Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, USA - Mercedes-Benz and ATP, the governing body of the men's professional tennis circuit, today announced a three-year extension of their acclaimed sports marketing partnership. The third renewal of the partnership formed in 1996 will run through 2008, ensuring that Mercedes-Benz remains the ATP's pre-eminent partner for at least 13 consecutive years.
Mercedes-Benz will remain the 'Official Car of the ATP,' providing transportation at many of the ATP's 64 tournaments in 31 countries each year. Mercedes-Benz also will provide official transportation at the Tennis Masters Cup, the circuit finale to be held in Shanghai, China, through at least 2007.
"Mercedes-Benz and the ATP have built a unique partnership based on clear fundamentals: brand relevance, exclusivity, target group relevance, global and local exploitation, media penetration and effective market communication," said Richard Davies, CEO, ATP Properties. "The net star, which marries the perfect brand icon with perfect placement, is one of the most prominent branding vehicles in world sport."
Dr. Klaus Maier, Executive Vice President Mercedes Car Group, responsible for Sales and Marketing, said: "The ATP tournaments present really high class tennis worldwide. For the global sports sponsoring activities of Mercedes-Benz this partnership is very important."
The Mercedes-Benz/ATP partnership began in 1996 with a four-year agreement that was first extended in 1999 and renewed for a second time in 2002. As the 'Official Car of the ATP' and the main sponsor of the Tennis Masters Cup, Mercedes-Benz provides official transportation at ATP tournaments, showcases prominent car displays at tournament sites and positions its Mercedes-Benz 'star' signage on nets. SMRI research found that 80% of tennis fans could identify Mercedes-Benz as the 'Official Car of the ATP.'
Individual ATP tournaments give Mercedes-Benz the ability to leverage locally the benefits of the global partnership, reaching potential customers with prominent car displays and brand centers, as well as entertaining VIPs with outstanding hospitality and pro-arm events. Research shows that the net star is in view for 37 per cent of ATP telecasts.
"The longstanding partnership between Mercedes-Benz and the ATP is one of the most successful and visible in all of world sports," said ATP Chairman Etienne de Villiers. "We are thrilled to see this partnership extended to at least 13 consecutive years."
In 1996, global attendances at ATP events totaled around 2.6 million. Last year, more than 3.98 million people attended ATP tournaments (not including Grand Slams) and attendances are on track to break the 4 million mark in 2005.
ATP VP, Media Relations: Graeme Agars, firstname.lastname@example.org, +1-904-285-8000
DaimlerChrysler Head of Sports Communications: Claudia Merzbach, Claudia.Merzbach@daimlerchrysler.com, +49 (711) 179 5379
1997 Partnership initiated in 1996 after extensive research indicated to Mercedes-Benz that tennis was their customers' favorite sport globally.
Pete Sampras finishes World No. 1 for the fourth consecutive year after beating Boris Becker in one of the all-time great matches in the final of the ATP Tour World Championship in Hannover.
ATP launches 'Bring it On' promotional campaign with recording artist Seal.
Mercedes-Benz launches a special edition ATP Tour C-Class car, selling 5,400 in the first month.
1997 ATP launches its News Service, which beams tournament highlights to major broadcasters and news agencies around the world.
ATP becomes sanctioning body of a unified worldwide senior circuit (now Delta Tour of Champions) with 19 events in 10 countries.
Spain sounds a warning as an emerging tennis superpower as Spanish players win 15 titles.
1998 Pete Sampras finishes year-end No. 1 for a record sixth consecutive year.
1999 Mercedes-Benz renews its partnership with ATP through 2002.
Andre Agassi, who had climbed back from No. 141 in late 1997, finishes the year-end No. 1 for the first time in his career.
Sampras sets a new mark for most weeks at No. 1 (his record of 286 weeks still stands) and defeats Agassi in the final of the last ATP Tour World Championship in Hannover.
2000 ATP launches its calendar-year points Race (now INDESIT ATP Race) and the 'New Balls Please' promotional campaign.
ATP joins with the ITF and Grand Slams to create a new circuit finale, the Tennis Masters Cup.
ATP rebrands its series of nine premier tournaments as the Tennis Masters Series.
Gustavo Kuerten wins the inaugural Tennis Masters Cup Lisbon and becomes the first South American to claim the year-end World No. 1 Ranking.
2001 ATP Tour shortens its name to ATP and unveils an updated brand mark (which remains the latest evolution of the 'serving man') to reflect the professional and progressive nature of the organization.
ATP Properties is established, allowing ATP to create marketing, licensing and broadcasting opportunities.
Lleyton Hewitt becomes the youngest year-end World No. 1 (at 20 years, eight months).
2002 Mercedes-Benz renews its partnership with ATP through 2005.
Hewitt wins back-to-back Tennis Masters Cup titles in Shanghai and again finishes World No. 1.
In his final match, Sampras wins a record 14th Grand Slam title at the US Open.
2003 ATP's hottest young stars finally win the battle against 'The Establishment,' with Andy Roddick, Roger Federer and Juan Carlos Ferrero finishing in the Top 3 of the Race.
2004 Roger Federer produces one of the most dominant seasons in history, winning three Grand Slam and three ATP Masters Series titles, a second consecutive Tennis Masters Cup and 11 titles in all.
Todd Woodbridge sets a world record for doubles titles won (finishes with 83).
INDESIT becomes official sponsor of the INDESIT ATP Race and INDESIT ATP Entry Ranking.
2005 Mercedes-Benz renews its partnership with ATP through 2008.
World No. 1 Federer and Spanish teenager Rafael Nadal electrify the ATP circuit as both win 11 titles, including a record four ATP Masters Series shields each.
Federer's historic winning streak in finals reaches 24 in Bangkok.
First ATP-level tournament in Vietnam is played in Ho Chi Minh City.
Shanghai to host Tennis Masters Cup for first year of a three-year agreement.