SMBC, Shimura see potential in iconic event

Helping the Singapore Open back on its feet seemed the best move for the Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC).

One of Japan's leading financial institutions, SMBC announced its intention to grow its presence in Asia last May, and saw the Open as a great vehicle towards that aim.

The bank has taken on the mantle as the title sponsor with a landmark three-year association with golf in Singapore.

"We are honoured to be the title sponsor and support the tournament," said Masayuki Shimura, managing director and head of Asia Pacific Division, SMBC.

"Living in Singapore, I always think about how much potential there is here, and that is why we took on this sponsorship.

"The Singapore Open has great history, great champions, and is recognised globally as one of the premier golf tournaments."

The golf enthusiast, who plays off a handicap index of 18, said SMBC plans to further expand its corporate brand in the region and contribute to the expansion of golf in Asia.

"We are especially proud to announce the partnership this year, as it is an important 50th anniversary year for Singapore," he said.