Citi Open, which has attracted top tennis players to the D.C. region for a half-century, will remain in Washington as the organizers have permitted reconfiguration of the event, according to the Washington Post.
As per the agreement approved by the Washington Tennis and Education Foundation, the tennis event will be run by venture capital investor Mark Ein, who also owns the Washington Kastles World Team Tennis. Ein also recently took ownership of the World Team Tennis.
The capital event hosts ATP 500-level men’s tournament and a smaller WTA International Women’s Tournament. For $20 million, about 12 offers were made for the ATP event, according to the Washington Post. Larry Ellison, who owns the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, made an offer for the event, as well as other American buyers. Representatives of Russia and Qatar also made offers for hosting the event. However, all these offers were declined.
“WTEF is taking significantly less to stay in D.C., but the board members made the right call,” Manuel Ortiz, the foundation chair, told the Washington Post.
All the profits made from the tournaments are
donated to charities, which will remain unchanged. Under the new agreement, the
tournament facilities will also be improved.
Since its beginning, the tournament was looked after by Donald Dell, a veteran sports agent, who is a former Davis Cup captain and an International Tennis Hall of Fame inductee. Until recently Lagardere Sports, where Dell is a group president, oversaw the tournament.