NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y., July 18, 2007 –
The Duramed FUTURES Tour offers rising stars in the women’s game the opportunity to prepare for a career on the LPGA. For the past eight years, the Duramed FUTURES Tour has operated in a licensee role with the LPGA. In recent years the organizations have worked closely to align business practices to assist the members of both tours with professional development, and to prepare members of the Duramed FUTURES Tour for the transition to the LPGA. One of the biggest examples of the synergy between the two organizations over the years has been the awarding of coveted LPGA Tour cards for the top money leaders on the Duramed FUTURES Tour. In 2003, the LPGA increased the cards from three to five.
“We are absolutely delighted that we have reached an agreement for the LPGA to acquire the Duramed FUTURES Tour,” Bivens said. “This acquisition demonstrates our desire to fortify the LPGA as the home to the best golfers in the world, providing us with a powerful development system for women, while increasing the economic opportunities for our members, marketing opportunities for sponsors and opportunities for fans to enjoy the next generation of future LPGA stars.
The acquisition will put women’s professional golf in the United States under one umbrella. Together, the tours will bring the world’s best female professional golfers to more markets, resulting in increased exposure for the players, sponsors and tours. Currently the LPGA has 35 tournaments worldwide and the Duramed FUTURES Tour has 19 tournaments in 14 states.
“The Duramed FUTURES Tour has strategically aligned with the LPGA to provide a seamless transition for Duramed FUTURES Tour players to the LPGA,” Calderon said. “This agreement solidifies what all of us have been working toward for years – a cohesive tour system for the best talent in women’s golf. The LPGA Tour features the very best in the game and the Duramed FUTURES Tour offers talented golfers and rising stars the opportunity to prepare for a career on the LPGA.”
Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. Notable terms call for Calderon to remain as president and CEO of the Duramed FUTURES Tour and become a member of the LPGA’s senior management team. In addition, the Duramed FUTURES Tour staff will relocate from Lakeland, Fla., to the LPGA headquarters in Daytona Beach, Fla., by the end of the year.
About the Duramed FUTURES Tour
Now in its 27th season, the Duramed FUTURES Tour remains committed to preparing women professional golfers for a career on the LPGA Tour. At season's end each year, the top five players on the Tour's money list earn automatic LPGA Tour exemptions for the following year. The official developmental tour of the LPGA has grown into the largest international developmental tour and the world's second-largest women's golf tour with more than 300 players from 31 nations. Nearly 300 alumnae are LPGA Tour members, with former Duramed FUTURES Tour players owning a total of 314 LPGA titles and 33 major championships. The Duramed FUTURES Tour currently conducts 19
tournaments in 14 states and since 1989, has raised more than $4 million for charitable organizations. For more information, please visit duramedfuturestour.com.
About the Ladies Professional Golf Association
Featuring the world’s best women golfers, the LPGA’s membership includes touring, teaching and club professionals. The LPGA Tour in 2007 features 35 events, with total prize money of nearly $55 million. Since 1981, the LPGA and its tournaments have raised approximately $180 million for charity. From the dreams of its 13 founders in 1950, the LPGA has evolved into the world’s pre-eminent professional sports organization. The LPGA has grown from its roots as a playing tour into a non-profit organization involved in every facet of golf. In addition to the LPGA Tour members, the LPGA membership includes nearly 1,200 certified Teaching and Club Professionals (T&CP) who serve the golf industry in teaching, coaching and management positions. The LPGA T&CP member programs focus on increasing the involvement of women, girls and youth in golf, as well as contribute to the growth of the sport overall. The LPGA is headquartered in Daytona Beach, Fla. For more information on the LPGA, log on to www.LPGA.com.
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Connie Wilson, LPGA, 386-274-6271, [email protected]
Jackie Beck, Duramed FUTURES Tour, 860-304-3643, [email protected]