The Sports Entrepreneurs Podcast by Marcus Luer

Stacey Allaster, World Leader in Tennis

July 10, 2020

Stacey is and has been truly a world leader in Tennis for 30 years, I call her the “First Lady of Tennis” but she felt that this should be reserved for a player like Serena Williams. That gives you a great sense of her character, always there to serve the game first and not out to take credit for the amazing work she has done over three decades. Enjoy the deep dive into the rise of the WTA Tour under her leadership, how she learned from David Stern’s playbook and hear how she is planning to host the US Open in August this year.  Very timely discussion on so many levels and excited to finally have a female voice on the Podcast.  

 

Key Highlights

  1. How she got started in tennis, as an 8th grader in summer camp
  2. Her purpose in life, generate the funds to bring Kids into the sport and create a career path
  3. More than 50% of Female leaders have played competitive sports, so it’s a great foundation for the future
  4. 15 years at Tennis Canada
  5. WTA Tour stories – billions of new revenue during her era
  6. Opening an office in China (NBA playbook), expanding across Asia and other new markets, expansion of the WTA Tour Final
  7. Price money grew by 100%  (cash is oxygen for sports), PERFORM media rights deal
  8. Players come in cycles and build on the previous generation achievements
  9. USTA – US Open will happen Aug 31 – Sept 13 (as of today) & lead up events
  10. Decision process to go ahead, where to host it (remaining in NYC), working with Governor and US government
  11. 80% of players are from around the world, major logistics to get athletes in and out of the country
  12. Risk mitigation through tests, screening and other measures – Covid is real and need to take serious
  13. Normally 850,000 fans on-site, single largest annual sporting event in the world – this time NO FANS
  14. Learning from others who have launched live events, Bundesliga, etc and creating new ideas
  15. Her final thoughts on sports in the next 30 years – need to be externally focused beyond the sport itself

 

About

Stacey Allaster is the Chief Executive, Professional Tennis, with the United States Tennis Association (USTA). In this role, Allaster is tasked with setting the strategic vision for the USTA’s pro tennis division – including oversight of the US Open, Emirates Airline US Open Series, Davis Cup, Fed Cup and more – and working closely with the USTA board of directors and the USTA pro tennis staff to ensure the continued viability of professional tennis in the United States.

Allaster was born in Windsor, Ontario and started playing tennis at the age of 12.

After graduating from University, she worked for the Ontario Tennis Association as membership sales co-ordinator and director of player development.

She became the Vice President of Sales and Marketing and Tournament Director of the Rogers Cup. In 2006, she was appointed as the President of Women's Tennis Association, a newly created role in the organization.

In July 2009, Allaster was promoted to be the chairman and CEO of the WTA Tour, succeeding Larry Scott.

While serving as the CEO, the WTA secured one billion dollars in diversified contracted revenues, which included the partnership with an international media group (Perform).

Allaster holds a Bachelor's degree in Economics and Physical Education from the University of Western Ontario where she also received a Doctor of Laws, honoris causa (LL.D.) and has an MBA from the Ivey School of Business.

Allaster was also recently appointed to the Devos Sport Business Management Program Board of Advisors.

 

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