Hyundai taking over sponsorship at Kapalua

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November 04, 2010
PGA TOUR staff

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla., and FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif. -- The PGA TOUR, Hyundai Motor America and Seoul Broadcasting System International (SBS) announced Thursday that Hyundai has become the title sponsor of the PGA TOUR's season-opening tournament at The Plantation Course in Kapalua, Hawaii, for the next three years.

As part of this agreement and starting with the 2011 tournament, the event is being renamed the Hyundai Tournament of Champions, reintroducing the tournament's original moniker that highlights the exclusive field of PGA TOUR tournament winners from the prior season. This title sponsorship continues Hyundai's "Big Voices in Big Places" strategy, positioning the Hyundai brand in the highest profile advertising venues including the NFL's Super Bowl, an exclusive automotive sponsorship of the Academy Awards and a global sponsorship of the 2010 FIFA World Cup"!.

"Hyundai's title sponsorship of the PGA TOUR's traditional season-opening tournament aligns our brand with world-class athletes who mirror our own competitive drive," said John Krafcik, president and CEO, Hyundai Motor America. "This sponsorship ensures that every champion at the tournament will arrive in luxury, and the fans that follow the sport will be exposed to an all-new interpretation of intelligent luxury, the Hyundai Equus."

Formerly known as the SBS Championship, this season-opening limited-field event was originally introduced as the Tournament of Champions in 1953 at Desert Inn Country Club in Las Vegas and maintained the Tournament of Champions identity until its title change in 1994. The Tournament of Champions remained at Desert Inn Country Club until 1967, when it moved to Stardust Country Club. The "T of C" then moved to La Costa Country Club in Carlsbad, Calif., in 1969, where it remained until moving to Kapalua in 1999.

"We are delighted to welcome Hyundai to the PGA TOUR family," said PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem. "In our discussions, Hyundai expressed interest in continuing its brand momentum throughout the U.S., as well as further strengthening its position in Asia. This title sponsorship will help accomplish these goals."

After discussions with the PGA TOUR and SBS, Hyundai agreed to partner with both as the title sponsor of the event. SBS, the former title sponsor of the event, will continue its involvement with the tournament based on its original 10-year sponsorship agreement announced in May 2009. Under that agreement, SBS will underpin the tournament through 2019. SBS will have hospitality and other on-site activities.

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