Emirates and The European Tour yesterday inked an agreement for Emirates to extend its investment across an additional ten tournaments, including the Perth International, until the end of the 2017 season, as well as assume the status of Official Airline of The European tour.
The addition of the Perth International, held in October 2014, will complement the comprehensive portfolio of support for the sport of golf in Australia, which includes Queensland’s PGA Championship and the Emirates Australian Open.
The announcement was made today by Nigel Hopkins, Executive Vice President Service Departments, Emirates Group and George O’Grady, Chief Executive Officer of the European Tour, during a press conference in London.
“Golf is one of the most popular sports in the world, and as a global sponsorship platform it has been immensely successful for us. Emirates’ increased investment in the European Tour is a natural move which will expand our global reach to golf enthusiasts across Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia,” said Nigel Hopkins.
“Engaging with our customers and fans through sports has been part of Emirates’ brand strategy since our early days. It makes sense for us – as an airline that connects the world – to align our brand with prestigious golf tournaments where the world’s most talented players come together. We will continue to work with our partners to celebrate the value of sport and deliver meaningful experiences for golf fans,” he added.
“Last month we were delighted to announce the extension of The Race To Dubai at Jumeirah Golf Estates through to the end of 2017 and the commitment of Emirates was very much part of the reason we were able to make the announcement,” said George O’Grady CBE, Chief Executive of the European Tour.
“This increased investment will give us the confidence to support our tournaments globally, enhancing not only our widespread geographical footprint but also the development of our business in new markets across the world – a strategy that we at the European Tour share with Emirates. We have enjoyed a wonderful relationship with Dubai for the past twenty five years and today’s announcement is the perfect way for us to launch the beginning of the next phase of our partnership” continued O’Grady.
As part of the agreement, Emirates will become a Worldwide Partner and Official Airline of the European Tour. Along with its existing nine European Tour golf events culminating to the prestigious DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, Emirates will add an additional ten tournaments to its international schedule including the BMW PGA Championship, the Nordea Masters, the D+D Real Czech Masters, the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open, the Portugal Masters, the Italian Open, the Joburg Open, the South Africa Open Championship, the Nelson Mandela Championship and Perth International.
The Race to Dubai, a major 48 tournament series on the European Tour schedule spans 26 countries across five continents and lays the groundwork to the season-ending DP World Tour Championship. The Race to Dubai will bring together the top 60 golfers for the next four seasons, cementing the airline’s continued commitment to the game of golf, its fans around the globe, and bringing prestigious, high-caliber events its home base of Dubai.
Emirates will benefit from highly visible branding across European Tour tournaments and the Tour’s media and digital platforms. In addition to enhanced hospitality rights, Emirates will also have its own exhibition booths within the tented village areas of the tournaments.
The European Tour’s ‘Virtual Eye’, an animated graphics system that provides real-time positioning and information about player performance and statistics including fairway flyovers, three- dimensional golf course models and a global positioning system tracking of golf balls, will provide Emirates additional brand visibility and year round exposure at 20 tournaments delivered through live television broadcasts, the European Tour’s website and mobile platforms.
As a leading supporter of major golf tournaments across the globe, Emirates is the Official Airline of 24 golf events worldwide. Beyond its commitment to nineteen European Tour events, Emirates also sponsors the Thailand Open (Thailand-One Asian Tour), The Emirates Australian Open, The Australian PGA Championship (Australia-Australasian Tour), the Indonesia PGA Championships (One-Asia Tour) and finally the Boeing Classic (USA) on the PGA Champions Tour in the United States.