Infosys takes spot vacated by IBM at Australian Open

The Australian Open has a new technology partner one year after IBM exited its long-term relationship with the grand slam tennis tournament.

For the 2018 tournament, Tennis Australia went without a technology partner, leaving a gap in its match analytics that will now be taken up by the Indian technology consultancy Infosys.

Under the three-year deal, Infosys becomes Official Digital Innovation Partner and will provide big data and analytics and artificial intelligence, as well as virtual and augmented reality to engage fans on the tournament’s digital platforms.

Commenting on the deal, Salil Parekh, chief executive and managing director, Infosys, said: “This association with Tennis Australia reaffirms our strategic commitment to the region where we partner with some of the leading enterprises in driving their digital transformation agenda.”

In September 2017, Noah Syken, vice-president, global sponsorships and client programmes at IBM told Sports Sponsorship Insider that deals with both the French Open and the Australian Open ended as of 2017 because of changing business needs.

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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.