Absa Bank Kenya has announced that it will sponsor the 2020 edition of the Magical Kenya Open golf tournament to the tune of Ksh. 75 million. The 2020 Magical Kenya Open will take place between March 12 -15 at the Karen Country Club.
The sponsorship by Absa Bank Kenya is part of an ongoing Ksh. 220 million sponsorship that was announced by Absa Group (formerly Barclays Bank Kenya) last year as the title sponsor. This year’s sponsorship marks the 10th anniversary of the bank’s sponsorship of the tournament. The new sponsorship funds by Absa Bank Kenya was split between operational costs and marketing of the event. Ksh. 150 million (Ksh. 75 million in 2019 and 2020) will go into operations and the remaining Ksh. 70 million will be used to raise the profile of the event.
In addition to the sponsorship for Kenya Open, Absa Bank has committed to reward the top five Kenyan pros who will be participating in the tournament, each receiving sponsorship worth Ksh. 250,000. The Absa-sponsored Kenyan golfers who make it to the top 20 after the first two rounds in the 2020 Magical Kenya Open will also receive Ksh. 500, 000. Those who make it to the top ten after the final round of the tournament will receive an additional Ksh. 1 million each.
Last year, the bank also committed to sponsor nine Kenyan pros and one amateur to successfully participate in the just-concluded Safari Tour series. The golfers who have benefited from this sponsorship include the Professional Golfers of Kenya captain C.J Wangai, Eric Ooko, Riz Charania, Simon Ngige, Kopan Timbe, David Wakhu, Jastas Madoya, Mohit Mediratta, and the youngest Kenyan pro, Mathew Wahome.
Apart from the Pros sponsorship throughout the Safari Tours, the bank has also organised several junior golfers’ clinics. The clinics are geared towards mentoring upcoming golfers through interactions with top professionals in a bid to cultivate interest in the sport among the youth and to grow their talent.
The Kenya Open now forms an integral part of the European Tour and attracts top golfers from across the globe. Last year, 22-year old Italy’s Guido Migliozzi won the tournament receiving Euros 183,330 (Ksh. 20.5 million) as the tournament’s winner while all pros who finished in the top ten took home at least Ksh. 2.5 million each.
Kenya Open is an annual golf tournament that was founded in 1967 and run by the Kenya Open Golf Limited (KOGL). It has been an event on the European based Challenge Tour schedule since 1991. The tournament was added to the European Tour starting in 2019. This happened after the prize money for the annual golf tournament was increased to €1.1 million. The Kenya Open title has been won by players such as Seve Ballesteros, Ian Woosnam, Ken Brown, Christy O’Connor Jr, and Trevor Immelman. The most successful player is England’s Maurice Bembridge, who recorded three victories between 1968 and 1979.
What: Magical Kenya Open Where: Karen Country Club When: March 12 -15, 2020