It has been more than a decade since the “Sony Ericcson WTA Tour” days. And the lack of a title sponsor was a black hole in the tour’s revenue stream that it had long looked to address.
On Thursday morning, the WTA introduced Hologic as its new global title sponsor.
No details – as these things usually go – on a “multi-year alliance”. But the WTA terms it the “largest global sponsorship in WTA history”.
It also designates Hologic as the WTA’s “official health partner and equality champion”.
The synergy comes from Hologic’s business, which is described as “one of the world’s top medical technology innovators”, focusing “primarily on improving women’s health and wellbeing.
“That includes industry-leading products in every category of its business: diagnostics, imaging systems, and surgical devices. Hologic’s areas of emphasis include state-of-the-art preventive care, reducing disparities in healthcare access and education, and unique research that helps countries worldwide better prioritize women’s health.”
(There are a lot of official quotes, but we’ll spare you).
Practically speaking, Hologic will be added to the net signage at all WTA events, and on the virtual advertising at 1000 and 500 events.
Joint initiatives such as Hologic WTA Labs, described as a “WTA initiative focused on health innovation and research-based projects specific to female athletes”, and other projects are in the works, the WTA said.
There are some major buzzwords carefully omitted from the press release, such as “breast”, “gynecology”, “mammogram”and the like.
But that is the business Hologic is in – and a crucial one to women’s health and wellness at that.
Not to mention custom-made to partner with the biggest women’s professional sport in the world.
The announcement comes at a time when the WTA faces significant revenue uncertainty because of its threat to pull its business out of China in the wake of the Peng Shuai situation.
The New York Times reported early this morning that the WTA’s stance on the Peng Shuai situation was a “catalyst” in bringing the two organizations together.
“We’ve been watching very closely some of the brave and really high-integrity moves that the WTA has made almost by themselves,” (Lisa) Hellmann (a senior vice president for global human resources and corporate communication at Hologic) said. “And that brought to our attention both the potential need they may have for title sponsorship, as well as really wanting to stand with and support the stance they are taking despite really negative impact on their business.”