The Good News Keep Coming!
Another month has gone by but the good news keep pouring in!
It gives me great pride to welcome Panasonic as a new sponsor of the Asian Tour. Panasonic becomes our Official Consumer Electronics Tour Partner, which reinforces its support for professional golf across the region. The deal with Panasonic also sees the launch of the “Panasonic Swing.”
It will feature five tournaments - 2017 Thailand Open, 2017 Panasonic Open India (November 2-5), one Asian Tour sanctioned event in Malaysia and Indonesia in 2017 and 2018 Panasonic Open Japan. In a nutshell, the Panasonic Swing ranking will be based on an aggregate points system earned by players at the five tournaments. The topthree finishers in the Panasonic Swing final ranking, which culminates with the 2018 Panasonic Open Japan, will earn US$70,000, US$50,000 and US$30,000 respectively via a bonus pool reward scheme.
The winner also gains an exemption into one designated European Tour tournament in 2018. In addition to that, the local finishers at the designated legs in Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and India will qualify for the Panasonic Swing finale in Japan next year. This is great news for the Asian Tour and we are looking forward to this extended partnership with Panasonic. We have worked together for many years and have enjoyed a great relationship staging the Panasonic Open India and Panasonic Open Japan.
By the time you read this, the Thailand Open would have concluded adding this prestigious tournament onto our 2017 Schedule. This marks the return of the Thailand Open to the Asian Tour schedule after an eight-year hiatus. This accomplishment shows the appeal of the Tour and our talented members. The Asian Tour also recently successfully staged the inaugural Yeangder Heritage in Chinese Taipei, this was the first tournament to be promoted from an Asian Development Tour (ADT) event to the Asian Tour. The National Golf Country Club was a superb venue. Shiv Kapur topped it all off by winning his second Asian Tour title, made more impressive that this victory was 11 years and four months after his first win!
Outside of Asia, our reigning Asian Tour number one Scott Hend and Sam Brazel represented Australia on the European Tour’s Golfsixes, an exciting new team format in golf. They settled for second place behind eventual winners Denmark, but Hend and Brazel put up a brave fight in the tournament.
On the corporate front, I’m pleased to announce that the Asian Tour and European Tour have jointly appointed Jeff Kimble as our new Commercial Director. Jeff brings with him 25 years of marketing, commercial and management experience in consumer and luxury goods across Asia. Following the signing of our Strategic Alliance established between the Asian Tour and European Tour last year, Kimble will lead the newly formed commercial team. He will spearhead new business opportunities for properties including the Ryder Cup, Eurasia Cup, joint-sanctioned Asian Tour-european Tour tournaments, Asian Tour full-field tournaments and Tourwide partnerships for both Tours.
Things are shaping up very nicely on the Asian Tour. In the coming months, we aim to announce more tournaments for our 2017 and 2018 schedules. Stay tune for more exciting news!
Asian Tour CEO Josh Burack and Panasonic Corporation Advertising Department Groupwide Brand Communications Division GM, Tetsurou Maruyama