MIAMI Aug 19 One of the most popular
professional tennis events has a new name - the Miami Open
presented by Itaú - following the announcement that the
Brazilian bank Itaú Unibanco is taking over as its new title
sponsor from Sony.
The tournament, nearing its 30th year, attracts the world's
top male and female tennis stars who help drive flocks of
international visitors and tennis fans to the ritzy island of
Key Biscayne off Miami where it is held.
"Itaú's understanding of the international consumer
experience, innovation, entertainment value, and commitment to
the growth of tennis makes the company an ideal partner," Miami
Open Director Adam Barrett said in a news release.
The tournament was previously named the Sony Open for the
Japanese electronics giant. A tournament spokesman on Tuesday
told Reuters Sony may remain a sponsor, though at a lower level.
Next year's matches are slated to take place from late March
into early April.
Miami is a hub for the international private banking
operations of Itaú, catering to high-net worth
The city has also been a magnet for Brazilian tourism and
investment, attracting hundreds of thousands of Brazilian
visitors who spend more than a billion dollars annually,
according to the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Brazilian fast-food chain Giraffa's has opened a handful of
restaurants across the city and high-end furniture maker
Artefacto operates a pair of showrooms.
"We see the Miami Open as a perfect platform to strengthen
our relationships with our clients around the world," Itaú
Marketing Director Andrea Pinotti Cordeiro said in a statement.
Itaú is a prominent sports backer in Brazil, where it
sponsors the country's national soccer team and was the
country's lead sponsor for the recently concluded FIFA World
(Reporting by Zachary Fagenson; Editing by David Adams and Eric