Korean automotive manufacturer Kia has signed a five-year extension to its sponsorship of the Australian Open grand slam tennis tournament.
Kia will continue to serve as the major sponsor of the event until 2023.
The new deal will see Kia become the longest running sponsor in the history of the tournament. The two parties first teamed up in 2002.
For the 2018 Australian Open, which concluded at the weekend, Kia provided a 120-strong fleet of vehicles, with drivers covering more than 300,000 kilometres in journeys throughout the tournament.
Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley said: “As the Grand Slam of Asia Pacific it’s our mission and responsibility to grow interest and excitement in the sport throughout the region, in which Kia plays a vital role.
“This year at the Australian Open more than 170 players from the Asia Pacific region competed, and we are so excited to see the breakthrough of the first ever grand slam semi-finalist from Korea, Hyeon Chung. It’s these successes, and these players, who will inspire interest in tennis and our event in the years to come.
“Kia has always been much more than just a sponsor of the Australian Open, they are a highly valued member of our tennis family. The Kia fleet ferrying the players around Melbourne during January, and the tremendous activations for fans onsite at Melbourne Park, have become synonymous with the tournament and an important part of the AO experience for our players.”
This year’s men’s and women’s singles titles were won by Roger Federer (pictured) and Caroline Wozniacki.