As expected, the PGA Tour announced on Monday that General Motor’s Cadillac will become the title sponsor of the former WGC-CA Championship at Doral. Cadillac will also serve as the umbrella sponsor of the World Golf Championships, meaning the brand will have a presence at all four WGC events.
Now, this is a great news for the Tour — to secure a major sponsor in an economy that is showing signs of recovery. Commissioner Tim Finchem has done a good job to prevent the Tour from losing a WGC event. That would have been a little mortifying (even though it would have been understandable considering the circumstances).
The World Golf Championships umbrella sponsorship provides Cadillac with a high-profile global marketing platform, including extensive branding and advertising across the four-event global series, as well as opportunities to connect with customers and dealers. Cadillac also will have vehicle display programs at events and throughout the year at Doral Resort, as well as initiate dealer and lead-generation programs.
“The World Golf Championships are all about the highest level of performance on a global stage and fit well with Cadillac’s theme as the New Standard of the World,” said Don Butler, Vice President for Cadillac Marketing. “As a global series, it provides us with an ideal marketing partnership for Cadillac to efficiently and effectively reach our target audience. We could not think of a more fitting way to bring golf back to Cadillac.”
As I mentioned in a post this morning, I spoke with PGA Tour player and econ aficionado Joe Ogilvie a few weeks ago on Cadillac’s (then-pending) sponsorship of Doral. He chimed in with his thoughts behind GM’s business move.
“From my standpoint, General Motors is not only going to get a great field with all the buzz with Doral, but it also reaches the Latin-American and South-American markets very well, with Miami being a predominantly Latin-American community,” said Ogilvie in a telephone interview. “You hit the emerging markets and you kind of get the double-whammy. [Doral] is more expensive, but you hit golf’s demographic that Cadillac will and you hit that Latin-American market which will be extremely big for General Motors going forward.”
Meanwhile, Finchem addressed the rumors of General Motors and the Tour bringing back a stop in the Detroit area. He confirmed they’re in “preliminary discussions.”
As for the 2011 schedule? It will be released on Thursday, December 2 — a month later than last year. But it’s expected to have 47 official events, the same as 2010.
One last thing: Cadillac will likely be providing courtesy cars for players at the WGC-Doral (and perhaps the other ones, too), but what kind? Will GM give Tiger privileges to drive an Escalade again? Just imagine the photo ops!