This year the Shiseido WTA Finals taking place in Shenzhen is the highlight in a series of a great play. After the season-long ranking, based on the Porsche Race Rankings, eight of the best is determined to compete against each other for an actual record-breaking amount of money.
A Record in Sport History
After signing with Shiseido, the WTA Finals winner is set to win a historically record-breaking sum of money. This was made possible by the generosity of the name-bearing sponsor. The total prize money for the tournament has been doubled since last year from $7million to $14million, and the undefeated champion in the singles stand to win $4.75 million. This amount is exceeding not only the prize money for all four the major grand slams but also the price money of other international sporting events. These include the Masters Champions, the ICC Cricket World Cup, the FIFA Women’s World Cup and the Tour de France.
The History of the WTA Finals
The first finals were held in 1972 in Florida’s Boca Raton. The amount on the champion’s check back then reflected $25 000. Since back then it was held in 12 different cities from various countries. During the years the list of hosts included the United State, Europe, the Middle East as well as Asia. When Singapore passed the honour on to Shenzhen during a 10-year hosting deal, it was considered to be a landmark in history.
Since the first finals, there have been 22 champions lifting the Billie Jean King Trophy in the air. The most successful of these was Martina Navratilova, who had the honour of holding it high eight times during her career, followed by German pride, Steffi Graff and the US Serena Williams both winning five times. Of the most recent 16 champions, eight were undefeated. With the 2018 winner, Elina Svitolina, being the most recent.
Shiseido is the largest cosmetic company in Japan and ranks as the fifth-largest in the world. They are known for their involvement in tennis due to having Naomi Osaka, the tennis sensation from Japan, as their brand ambassador. Shiseido is committed to the empowerment of women. They want to not only create better opportunities for the younger players but also create a great synergy between the company and the WTA Finals. The tournament’s slogan “Sparks Will Fly” is to celebrate the new relationship. Their marketing campaign is going to include some of the most influential women in the world of tennis, with Jennifer Zhang being the face with whom they start with. Zhang was the first Chinese female umpire in the WTA tour.
Shiseido considers the WTA as a leader in the world of professional sports when it comes to enabling equal opportunities for females. This is a perfect alignment with Shiseido’s vision and ideals of empowering women. Both sides are also very pleased with having Shenzhen being the hosting city. Shenzhen is a city which is in the lead of all innovation trends currently in China and maybe even the world.