The ITF announced today that BNP Paribas will become the new title sponsor of the World Team Cup wheelchair tennis event in 2012 in a five-year agreement that runs through 2016. The sponsorship was announced today at the 27th World Team Cup taking place in Pretoria, South Africa.
The World Team Cup is the ITF’s flagship wheelchair tennis event, often referred to as the Davis and Fed Cups of wheelchair tennis. The initial event took place in California in 1985 involving six men’s teams. The women’s competition began the following year, with quad and junior events introduced in 1998 and 2000 respectively. The World Team Cup has continued to grow with almost 200 players representing 64 teams from 34 countries this year.
BNP Paribas joined the ITF’s family of sponsors in 2001, taking over title sponsorship of Davis Cup in 2002. The bank first became involved in wheelchair tennis in 2009 as an Official Partner of Wheelchair Tennis, and has also been an official partner of the World Team Cup since 2009.
BNP Paribas’s long-term agreement with the ITF also includes sponsorship of Fed Cup, Junior Davis Cup, Junior Fed Cup, and the biennial Worldwide Coaches Conference and regional coaches workshops.
Alongside the sponsorship announcement, the ITF has launched a new logo for the BNP Paribas World Team Cup that was revealed in Pretoria today.
ITF President Francesco Ricci Bitti said: “BNP Paribas is an outstanding partner of the ITF at all levels of the game, thanks to its longstanding commitment to and enthusiasm for tennis. I am sure that this new sponsorship agreement will help raise the profile of the World Team Cup, which is the most prestigious event on the ITF’s wheelchair tennis calendar.”
Antoine Sire, Head of Brand, Communications and Quality for BNP Paribas, said: “Since 1993, BNP Paribas has been committed to developing wheelchair tennis in France through its support of tournaments, such as the ‘BNP Paribas Open de France Handisport’. In 2009, BNP Paribas became an official partner of the ITF’s wheelchair tennis programmes, thus giving its commitment an international dimension.”
“The ITF’s integration of wheelchair tennis within its activities, and the creation of wheelchair tennis stars have made this discipline really spectacular. Wheelchair tennis is very demanding and deserves support to help develop it at the highest competition level. As part of its decision to reinforce its backing in this area, BNP Paribas will be the title sponsor of the BNP Paribas World Team Cup from 2012 for a five-year renewable period. This new partnership strengthens our long-term presence in every area of tennis,” Sire added.
About BNP Paribas
BNP Paribas (www.bnpparibas.com) is one of the strongest banks in the world*. The Group has a presence in more than 80 countries and more than 200,000 employees, including more than 160,000 in Europe. It ranks highly in its three core activities: Retail Banking, Investment Solutions and Corporate & Investment Banking. In Europe, the Group has four domestic markets (Belgium, France, Italy and Luxembourg) and BNP Paribas Personal Finance is the leader in consumer lending. BNP Paribas is rolling out its integrated retail banking model across the Europe-Mediterranean zone and boasts a large network in the western part of the United States. In its Corporate & Investment Banking and Investment Solutions activities, BNP Paribas also enjoys top positions in Europe, a strong presence in the Americas and solid and fast-growing businesses in Asia. (* Rated AA by Standard & Poor's i.e. 3rd rating level on a scale of 22.)