good news for IW
this bank really loves to sponsor tennis
Indian Wells Tennis Tournament Announces New Name BNP Paribas Open
BNP Paribas Open To Offer Equal Prize Money
Indian Wells, Calif., January 14, 2009 – The Indian Wells Tennis Tournament, formerly called the Pacific Life Open has a new name, the BNP Paribas Open (BNP Paree Ba) and a new website address, bnpparibasopen.org. BNP Paribas, a global leader in banking and financial services, has agreed to sponsor the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 and Sony Ericsson WTA Tour Premier tennis tournament, to be held from March 9-22, 2009, at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, it was announced by Charlie Pasarell, tournament chairman.
The BNP Paribas Open, for the first time in its 20-year combined (men & women) history will offer equal prize money to both men and women. The event is also adding another evening session on Thursday, March 12 which will make 21 sessions of match play. Last year, more than 330,000 people attended the two-week event, a ten-fold increase since its inception, making it the most-attended tournament in the world outside of the four grand slams.
The tournament, which was established in the Coachella Valley in 1976, has blossomed under the direction of former player and ATP board member Charlie Pasarell. It has evolved from a one-week men’s event into one of the sport’s crown jewels, held in the second largest, and certainly one of the most beautiful, venues in the world. In addition, the event is run by one of the strongest ownership groups in all of sports, and is now sponsored by one of the world’s foremost banks and the longest running supporters in the history of professional tennis.
Baudouin Prot, Chief Executive Officer of BNP Paribas said, “BNP Paribas has been a sponsor of tennis for more than 35 years. We are deeply committed to this relationship and we believe that the sponsorship of tennis events is part and parcel of the strategy to make the BNP Paribas brand internationally recognised. We are very excited to be joining the Indian Wells family as the title sponsor of a major tennis event in the United States where we have been present and growing for more than three decades.”
BNP Paribas has been supporting tennis since 1973, when it became the Official Sponsor of the French Open. In addition to their partnership with this Grand Slam, the bank became the sponsor of the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris, France. As its international presence was growing, the company became the title sponsor of the Davis and Fed Cup competitions, the Masters Series Monte Carlo and since the acquisition of BNL in 2006, the "Internazionali BNL d'Italia" in Rome. In the US, the company is already title sponsor of the Bank of the West Classic women’s event at Stanford, California (BancWest is a BNP Paribas subsidiary).
“We are thrilled to have BNP Paribas as the new title sponsor of our event,” said Pasarell. “During this partnership, we believe we will guide our tournament to greater heights, both in terms of attendance and global appeal.”