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November 7, 2001

<br />MIAMI (AP) -- Struggling telecom company Ericsson will drop its $6 million-a-year title sponsorship of the Ericsson Open after next year's tournament.

The Key Biscayne, Fla.-based event, the second-largest tennis tournament in the United States, began a five-year title agreement in 2000 with the Swedish company. Slumping business, including losses of $377 million in the third quarter this year, prompted Ericsson to pull out two years early.

``The current economic downturn has posed business challenges that we could not have anticipated when we entered into this sponsorship,'' company spokeswoman Kimberley Korb said in a statement Wednesday.

The tournament, owned by International Management Group, will seek a new title sponsor beginning in 2003.

``Ericsson has been an excellent partner,'' tournament chairman Butch Buchholz said. ``We are duty-bound to work with Ericsson on an exit arrangement that both the tournament and Ericsson are comfortable with.''

Before the deal with Ericsson, the tournament's title sponsor was Lipton.
 

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Give it back to Lipton ..... some still refer it as the Liptons.
 

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Yes, give it back to Lipton!!!
 

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Venus should buy the sponsorship and rename it after her. <img src="smile.gif" border="0"> "Venus Razor" or something.. lol Plus she dominates on the surface anyway. <img src="smile.gif" border="0">
 

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At least things may be better by 2003. Tennis will be in for a shock only when a new sponsor comes and REDUCES prize money! Even a great event like the Lipton(oops Ericcsoon <img src="smile.gif" border="0"> loses a lot of money.

Lipton probably is the best-I think even the TV announcers here in the states slipped and called it the Lipton quite often!
 

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No wonder Ericsson can no longer be the sponsor as one has always to turn off the <s>ericssons</s> cellphones during a match!!!!! <img src="wink.gif" border="0">

Maybe the Umpired should have said would you please turn off your ericssons during the match instead of turn off your cellphones <img src="wink.gif" border="0">
 
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