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Front Page » Top Stories » Spending Power Of Tennis Fans Make Nasdaq Sponsorship A Match Made In Heaven

Spending Power Of Tennis Fans Make Nasdaq Sponsorship A Match Made In Heaven

Written by on July 18, 2002

By Frank Norton
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Five months after Nasdaq bought name rights to the world’s fifth largest annual tennis tournament, held on Key Biscayne, company executives see it as a match made in heaven.

A recent demographic study shows a third of those who attended the Nasdaq 100 Open in March have a personal net worth exceeding $1 million while a third also earn more than $150,000 a year.

"The tennis audience is our target – and this one of the most highly visible global-reach events out there," said Nasdaq spokesman Michael Demeo. "We’re trying to reach those investors who would be interested in Nasdaq companies and also gain exposure for those companies’ products as well as stocks."

The study was performed by Weston-based Sports Management Research Institute, which has also provided demographic and economic impact studies for the NFL Super Bowl, the Orange Bowl and the Nascar Winston Cup at the Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Kathleen Davis, who heads the firm, said the 100 Open has a smaller economic impact on South Florida than the other top-tier events but it commands the attention of the biggest media representatives and attracts the most highly focused demographic groups in the world.

Sports Management Research Institute found 70% of the 265,000 people who attended the tennis matches in March also invest in equity markets while one out of every four own a second home. The average attendee’s age was 46.3. They most frequently own a Mercedes, followed by Toyota and BMW.

According to tournament spokesperson David Tratner, the 12-day event drives up local hotel occupancy. He said 30% of the 265,000 attendees came from outside South Florida.

"We draw a lot of people with high net worth who can afford to plan a vacation around coming down to see tennis, Mr. Tratner said.

The Nasdaq 100 Open, formerly known as the Lipton Championships and more recently the Ericson Open, is a six-year deal announced in February worth less than $5 million a year – Nasdaq will not disclose the price it paid for the event.

The Nasdaq stock market lists more than 4,100 companies, the largest 100 of which sponsor the event. The 100 Open is the fifth largest tennis tournament in the world after Grand Slam events and the second largest in the country.

"The word ‘local’ is a misnomer," said Mr. Tratner from his Coral Gables office. "We get over 900 hours of TV coverage across the world in 150 countries. The event’s global media reach is the perfect promotional vehicle for a global, electronic stock market."

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