Beemok Capital, the family office of Charleston, S.C.-based businessman and philanthropist Benjamin Navarro, announced the recent closing of its previously announced acquisition of the Western & Southern Open tournament from the United States Tennis Association.
Terms weren’t disclosed.
The tournament, which has been played in Ohio, fields the best players in the world and is one of only five tournaments in the world, outside of tennis’ major championships, to host concurrent top-tier men’s and women’s tournaments at the same venue.
Officials said that in 2025 the importance and scale of the tournament will continue to grow as the ATP main draw player field will expand by 70 percent and the duration extends from seven to 12 days.
The acquisition is the next milestone in Beemok’s commitment to the development of tennis across all levels in the U.S., the officials said.
Beemok affiliates currently play host to North America’s largest women’s only professional tennis tournament, the Credit One Charleston Open, which was acquired by Beemok in 2018.
Beemok also operates two tennis complexes in the Charleston area that serve as hosts for numerous USTA Pro Circuit events, the USTA Girls’ 18s National Clay Court Championship, and a tennis academy developing players who aspire to compete at the college and pro levels.
“We’re honored to be the new owners of the Western & Southern Open,” said Navarro. “It is a tournament I have admired for many years, and we are thrilled at the opportunity to honor the traditions of the tournament while exploring ways to enhance the experience for players and fans.”
Beemok also announced the hiring of Todd Martin as the head of tennis operations for Beemok Sports.
Martin will assume the role effective Jan. 2, 2023, and will lead Beemok’s efforts to drive growth and development of tennis in the U.S.
Martin will also work closely with the existing leadership teams of the Credit One Charleston Open and Western & Southern Open.
Martin currently is chief executive officer of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, a role he has held since 2014.
His many achievements on the court as a professional on the ATP Tour include reaching the men's singles final at both the 1994 Australian Open and the 1999 US Open as well as attaining a career-high singles ranking of world No. 4.
Martin previously was the coach of Novak Djokovic, the winner of 21 Grand-Slam men’s singles titles, and the former No. 1-ranked American player and current U.S. Davis Cup Captain, Mardy Fish.
He has dedicated himself to the sport in various ways through philanthropy and volunteer service, including the founding of Todd Martin Youth Leadership, which serves at-risk youth in his hometown of Lansing, Mich., by providing education and leadership programs through the game of tennis; serving as president of the ATP Player Council throughout much of his playing career; and serving three terms as a director at large on the USTA Board of Directors, from 2011-2016.
Martin currently is a player representative to the president of the USTA and a member of the board of directors of the Tennis Industry Association.