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Game, set, Rolex for Roland-Garros

Swiss watchmaker Rolex has been named as the new timing partner of the French Open, completing the brand’s clean sweep of all four tennis Grand Slams.

In a new multi-year deal starting next year, Rolex will take over from rival  luxury brand Longines, which has quit the position after an 11-year association with Roland-Garros.

The Premium Partner deal builds on Rolex’s longstanding partnerships with Wimbledon, the Australian Open and, more recently, the US Open.

Bernard Giudicelli, president of the French Tennis Federation, said: “Our association with this prestigious brand takes on a whole new dimension by anchoring itself in the heart of our famous Porte d’Auteuil competition.”

This year, Rolex took over as the US Open’s Official Timekeeper and Official Timepiece, after rival Japanese watchmaker terminated its contract three years ahead of its expiry.

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The partnership is understood to be a three-season deal, from 2019-20 to 2021-22, and builds on AXA’s existing Global Partner agreement with Liverpool.

The deal is the largest ever sponsorship investment in UK women’s sport and comes less than a year after the league went fully professional in September 2018.

Under the five-year global deal, Oppo will become the first Official Smartphone Partner of The Championships, Wimbledon, as the event is officially known.

US sportswear brand Nike is paying about $7.5m (€6.7m) per year to sponsor China’s League of Legends Pro League (LPL), according to industry sources.