Mercedes Benz has decided to conclude their contract with the Association of Tennis Professionals

Mercedes Benz has decided to conclude the current three year contract with the ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals), first initiated in 1996, at the end of 2008. Against the background of a revised brand positioning concept and changes in communication structures, the focus in the sponsoring activities of Mercedes Benz is changing too. In future, the emphasis will shift to activities in golf, equestrianism and soccer as well as fashion and lifestyle.

“I would like to thank Mercedes Benz for their support throughout our partnership. Both the ATP and Mercedes Benz have achieved great things in our time together,” says Richard Davies, CEO ATP Properties.

“Over the years, our partnership with the ATP has had a very high brand fit for Mercedes Benz – but we are now adding a new angle to our revised brand positioning,” says Dr Olaf Göttgens, Vice President Brand Communications Mercedes Benz Passenger Cars. “We are able to look back on a highly rewarding long-term sponsorship which fully met the targets we had set ourselves. Together with the ATP, we were able to support eminent developments in men’s professional tennis. Mercedes Benz would like to extend many thanks to the ATP for extraordinary partnership.”

Mercedes Benz has been a premier sponsor of the ATP since 1996 and has to date been present with the familiar “star in the net” at more than 40 tournaments per year. This innovative branding idea on the worldwide ATP Tour formed a milestone in this partnership which has continuously developed  over the last 12 years. The “star in the net” became a significant symbol for quality on tennis courts around the world.

Retrospectively, Mercedes Benz and the ATP can be highly satisfied with the results of their long-term partnership which witnessed significant growth in the average number of spectators at tournaments and TV coverage. More than 35 million tennis fans came into contact with Mercedes Benz at ATP tournaments during the sponsorship. Furthermore, over a billion people (accumulated) watched ATP tournaments on TV.

Published 28 September 2007 Melanie Carter

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