World Snooker Enterprises has signed up construction company Travis Perkins as a headline sponsor for the UK Snooker Championships, in a three-year deal said to be worth over &£1m.
The deal is a considerable coup for World Snooker in a depressed sponsorship market. The tournament suffered a year without a sponsor in 2001, but managed to sign up electrical retailer Powerhouse in 2002 in a six-figure, one-year deal. Previous sponsors for the championship, which is one of the largest annual snooker events, have included betting chain Coral.
The UK Snooker Championships, which take place in November, attract the UK’s top players and carry a total prize fund of &£615,000. The competition offers the sponsor at least 35 hours of television coverage on BBC, as well as on-site branding at the venue in York.
In November last year, World Snooker Enterprises appointed its first marketing director, Andy James. His brief is to find new sponsors to replace the cigarette brands that traditionally sponsored snooker, following the ban on tobacco advertising.
Travis Perkins is one of the largest suppliers of building products in the UK. The company is already involved in sports sponsorships: it has deals with rugby union team Northampton Saints and the Senior Masters golfing competition.