Scottish Tennis Pro Andy Murray Signs Deal With XIX Globosport, Eyes Asian Market
Andy Murray's management team, XIX Entertainment, has "announced an intriguing new partnership" with Indian tennis standout Mahesh Bhupathi's management company, Globosport, to "explore business opportunities in China and India," according to Kevin Mitchell of the London GUARDIAN. Murray "is the first signing of XIX Globosport," a company XIX Founder Simon Fuller has formed with Bhupathi. They said in a joint statement they are exploring "the burgeoning sports and entertainment opportunities in India and the Middle East." The "impetus has come from Fuller, who recently did a major deal with IMG for David Beckham in China." Bhupathi said, "He has a vision for this part of the world and we are excited that he has chosen to partner us." Bhupathi "set tennis buzzing this week when it was confirmed he is chasing the signatures of the world's leading players" to take part in an Indian Premier League-style tennis tournament across Asia over three weeks in the Nov.-Dec. break at the end of the year. Murray "is at the heart of those plans" -- although, if his playing schedule grows, he "might now be even further away from playing in the Davis Cup for his country" (GUARDIAN, 4/4).
DOUBLE TEAM: In London, Paul Newman reported as part of the new deal Murray "will also team up with Ugo Colombini, a former player and highly experienced agent who has worked closely with Juan Martin del Potro." Bhupathi's company "will provide expertise in the expanding Asian markets." Colombini "will bring more tennis specialist expertise to Murray's management team." Murray said in a statement: "I believe a mix of Simon's experience and Mahesh's understanding of the sport will create the perfect team for my off-court interests and will allow me to continue to dedicate myself and focus on my goals on the court" (INDEPENDENT, 4/4). The AFP reported Murray's commercial activities have been managed by Fuller's XIX Entertainment since '07. Bhupathi launched media and entertainment company GloboSport in '02 (AFP, 4/4).