WTA or Women’s Tennis Association was established in 1973. It is the primary organizational body that manages women’s professional tennis tournaments. Its counterpart organization for men’s professional tennis is the ATP or Association of Tennis Professionals. The origin of the organization started when the inaugural event of Virginia Slims was won on September 23, 1970 at Houston, Texas. During the early days, Billie Jean King was the head figure of the WTA that comprises only nine players. WTA signed with Gladys Heldman of the World Tennis publications for $1 contracts. The corporate headquarters of WTA is found in St. Petersburg, the Asia-Pacific headquarters is in Beijing, and the European headquarters is in London.
The remaining eight players that pledged to compete were Julie Heldman, Valerie Ziegenfuss, Judy Tegart Dalton, Kristy Pigeon, Peaches Bartkowicz, Kerry Melville Reid, Nancy Richey, and Rosemary Casals. The inauguration of the Virginia Slims Circuit was provided with financial support by the cigarette brand Philip Morris. There were 19 tournaments held and all are based in the United States.
During the first two years of the Virginia Slims Circuit’s open era, a huge number of male players started playing professionally and competed in tournaments. There were combined events for both men and women that even attracted investment increased using. Since then, several competitions for women’s tennis controlled by the International www.uomosalute.com Lawn Tennis Federation or ILTF began to drop.
The huge development of WTA was attributed to the prior held meeting during the week of the 1973 Wimbledon Championships. The said meeting was held at London’s Gloucester Hotel. It had united all the women’s professional tennis in single tour. In 1975, the financial stature of WTA was increased as it signed a television broadcast with CBS. This is the first of its kind throughout the history of WTA. Over the years, further developments on the financial stature of WTA were resulted.
From April to November of 1976, Colgate had acquired sponsorship of the WTA Tour. Avon had replaced Virginia Slims in 1979 as the sponsor of the winter circuit. The following year 1980, the biggest prize fund of $100,000 for single WTA tournament was offered. This is for the Avon Championships of the history of WTA Tour. Apparently, in 1981, Colgate Series had renamed the Toyota Series that include numerous tournaments from different parts of the world. There are Avon sponsored events that happen solely in the United States.
In the beginning of the 1983 season, two circuits have emerged when Virginia Slims came back to restore the full sponsorship rights of the WTA Tour. As this happens, each tournament had fallen under the administration of the WTA and then became part of the series of Virginia Slims World Championships. Over the years, WTA Tour continued to expand. Since 1980, there are more than 250 women who play professionally for the tour. The tour had comprised of 47 global events and offered millions in prize money. Because of this, financial opportunities of revolutionary developments were allowed not only in tennis but also across all sports for women.