SBD/10/Leagues Governing Bodies

WTA RAISES THE BAR FOR TITLE SPONSOR: $25M OVER THREE YEARS

          Title sponsorship of the WTA Tour is being offered for
     $25M over three years, which "may seem a bit pricey compared
     with" the three-year, $12M deal that departing sponsor Corel
     paid in rights fees, according to Terry Lefton of BRANDWEEK. 
     Lefton: "But WTA rights broker, IMG, Cleveland, has
     repackaged the sponsorship in proportion with what it claims
     is a remarkable 11 billion impressions over a year's worth
     of TV broadcasts to more than 20 countries."  The Tour has
     "increased in-game sponsor ID with the addition of sponsor-
     branded statistical and scoring updates, and an additional
     dedicated camera specifically designed to catch sponsor
     exposure vehicles. ... Also included is a grass roots
     program, the usual hospitality and tickets and the tour's
     close working relationship with its players." Virtual
     signage could also be added if the concept is "high" on a
     sponsor's list.   Lefton adds the price is "likely to raise
     a few eyebrows."  WTA Tour CEO Bart McGuire: "We have some
     really marketable athletes and I really feel ($25 million
     is) relatively inexpensive for a year-round property that is
     the most global of any women's sport" (BRANDWEEK, 3/9). 
           
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