HSBC ANNOUNCED AS NEW PATRON OF THE OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP

The Open

For Immediate Publication

HSBC ANNOUNCED AS NEW PATRON OF THE OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP

15 October 2010, St Andrews, Scotland: HSBC was today named as a Patron of The Open Championship for the next five years.

The partnership means that HSBC will become the 'Official Banking Partner' of The Open Championship, which returns to Royal St George's next year (14 - 17 July).

The R&A's Chief Executive, Peter Dawson said: "We are very pleased to welcome HSBC. The Open is golf’s oldest Major Championship and its most international. For many years, The R&A has looked to establish relationships that help golf’s growth globally. As The R&A seeks to engage in and support activities to grow the game, a partnership with 'the world's local bank' is a natural progression."

Over the last five years, HSBC has been at the forefront of the expansion of the game in Asia with the creation of the HSBC Champions in China, which it has helped develop from inception in 2005 to become Asia’s first World Golf Championship tournament. It has also created a comprehensive programme of grassroots activity across China designed to increase both interest and participation in the game.

Giles Morgan, Group Head of Sponsorship at HSBC commented: “The Open Championship is, without a doubt, one of the world’s most important golf tournaments and HSBC is very honoured to become a Patron. Golf sponsorship continues to be an important investment tool for us to grow and sustain our business and brand. This new partnership is an exciting opportunity to take our current activity with professional and grassroots golf in both established and emerging markets to a new level.”

2010 Open Champion Louis Oosthuizen said: “Winning The Open, particularly at St Andrews, is the pinnacle of any golfer’s career. I could not have got there without the great support I’ve received from within the game and I hope this announcement will lead to further opportunities for The R&A to do even more to help the game to grow around the world.”

The R&A is the governing body of world golf outside the US, with affiliated national governing bodies in 126 countries around the world. In 2010, 200,000 spectators attended The Open Championship and over 3,000 hours of television coverage were broadcast to 193 countries worldwide. There were over three million unique visitors to The Open’s official website (www.opengolf.com) during this year’s Championship, with 300,000 hours of streamed coverage via the internet.

ENDS

Note to Editors

The R&A
Based in St Andrews, The R&A is golf's governing body and organiser of The Open Championship. The R&A is committed to working for golf and operates with the consent of 141 organisations from the amateur and professional game and on behalf of over 30 million golfers in 126 countries.

Further information:

Malcolm Booth
Assistant Director – Head of Communications

The R&A
Tel: +44 1334 460000