Emirates continues sports sponsorship drive as it signs ‘biggest deal’ in ATP history

Emirates has agreed the ‘biggest sponsorship deal’ in the history of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP), with the travel brand set to become the official airline and premier partner of the ATP World Tour.

The tour, which spans 60 tournaments across 32 countries, has a global broadcast audience in excess of 800 million people. And the ATP said Emirates, which has signed “the biggest sponsorship deal” in its history, will “benefit from global marketing rights delivering a powerful and consistent presence.”

Emirates will also provide a hospitality platform across each of the ATP tournaments.

“For us, the global reach offered by sponsoring the ATP World Tour affords us the opportunity to connect and engage with millions of fans across the globe,” said Boutros Boutros, senior vice president of corporate communications, marketing and brand at Emirates.

“Emirates offers direct flights to nearly 90% of the 32 countries visited by the ATP World Tour, making this partnership particularly relevant for our customers and brand.”

Emirates is replacing beer brand Corona as the Tour’s Premier Partner, which will see it become the chief sponsor for tournaments such as the US Open, Australian Open and the ATP World Tour Finals.

Tennis is ‘cleaner’ than football

ATP president’ Chris Kermode said that off the back of the Emirates deal, it had secured $160m in deals over the next five years.

He says brands and marketers are attracted to the ‘cleaner image’ of tennis after recent high-profile scandals within sports such as football and rugby.

“People see [tennis] as a clean sport, it’s a great product with great athletes and I think tennis is in the best place it’s ever been,” he said.

“Many sports have had difficulties, most recently athletics and football. I think brands are thinking very carefully about which sports they want to associate with.”

Emirates turns its attention to sport

Over recent years, Emirates has strongly focused on sport sponsorships as it aims to boost its global appeal.

Earlier this year, it was revealed as the new primary sponsor of English football’s The F.A. Cup, while it already sponsors Arsenal FC’s stadium and shirts, as well as top French football club Paris Saint Germain.

Emirates was also one of the global sponsors for this year’s Rugby World Cup, with its Flag Bearers campaign giving young fans the chance to lead teams onto the pitch.

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