RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil - IMX, a joint venture of sports and entertainment between EBX Group and IMG Worldwide, will host the Rio Open in Rio de Janeiro from February 15 to 23, 2014.
The Rio Open will be South America's largest tennis tournament, the only ATP-WTA combined event on the continent, the first South American and Brazilian ATP World Tour 500 event, the first WTA event in Rio de Janeiro and the largest annual sporting event in the city. It joins other global events in Rio de Janeiro, such as the 2014 World Cup, the 2016 Olympics, Rock in Rio, New Year's Eve in Copacabana and Carnival.
The Rio Open will take place at the Brazilian Jockey Club, which has eight clay courts - including a 7,000-seat stadium court. It will offer $235,000 in prize money for the WTA competitors and $1.25 million in prize money for the ATP participants.
IMX announced in April 2012 the acquisition of the WTA International and ATP 500 event in Memphis. Soon after, the WTA and ATP governing bodies approved the date acquisition.
"It is a great privilege for IMX to bring an event of this magnitude to Brazil," said Alan Adler, CEO of IMX. "The Rio Open is here to stay and it will be the largest annual sporting event in the city of Rio de Janeiro. The date acquisition of Memphis in 2012 was the first step to enter the world of tennis and the next will be holding the event in 2014, with the presence of big names in the sport."
"We look forward to bringing another WTA tournament to Brazil, providing growth and development of the sport in a very important market," said Stacey Allaster, WTA Chairman and CEO. "We applaud the commitment of Rio de Janeiro to tennis; this event is a great showcase for the sport."
"We are very pleased that the calendar in 2014 includes a new ATP World Tour 500 in Rio de Janeiro, a renowned destination and that will be the focus of the sporting world in the coming years with a series of major events," said Brad Drewett, ATP Executive Chairman and President. "I'm sure that Rio will be an extremely popular destination among our players, who are eager to bring the best to the passionate Brazilian fans of tennis. We wish all the best for the organization, with IMX ahead of this first edition of the tournament in 2014."