Report: Saudi Arabia’s PIF pitches $1B investment into tennis

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Golf isn’t the only sport Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund is trying to get its hands on.

In the midst of negotiations with the PGA Tour, PIF is also looking to invest in tennis, specifically the ATP Tour and the WTA Tour, Sportico reported Wednesday.

PIF is not looking to take over the tours, per the report. Instead, the money invested would primarily be used to acquire licensing that would bring a Masters 1000 event to Saudi Arabia. ATP chairman Andrea Gaudenzi reportedly made those on the tours aware of the offer last weekend at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, Calif.

Money from PIF reportedly also could go toward prize money, sponsorships, player expenses and a new “senior” tour.

A report from The Athletic indicated that the investment is worth $1 billion-plus.

There will be ATP/WTA meetings in May in Madrid to further discuss the offer that PIF has on the table.

“The WTA is engaging actively with the other governing bodies of professional tennis, as well as with existing and potential commercial partners, to explore whether we can bring greater alignment across the sport, while reducing the fragmentation that exists at present,” the WTA told Sportico in a statement. “These conversations have been ongoing for some time and, while they remain positive and constructive, currently there is no consensus across the sport over any preferred outcome.

“In the meantime, the WTA will continue to focus on delivering another exciting season and executing our growth plans, while reviewing the proposals that are being put forth by Saudi Arabia and the Grand Slams.”

The Telegraph of London first reported the news of the meeting and PIF’s potential investment. PIF had not commented on the proposed plan, nor had the ATP Tour, per Sportico.