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News Dean & DeLuca nabs title sponsorship for Colonial tournament

Dean & DeLuca nabs title sponsorship for Colonial tournament

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Robert Francis
Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

Fort Worth’s PGA tournament at Colonial Country Club has found a title sponsor: gourmet food provider Dean & DeLuca.

The PGA Tour and the specialty food company made the announcement Monday, Feb. 15.

The “Dean & DeLuca Invitational” is scheduled for the week of May 23 – 29 and has been held at Colonial Country Club for the past 70 years, making it the tour’s longest-tenured tournament at a single venue. The six-year sponsorship agreement runs through 2021.

“The partnership with Dean & DeLuca is very exciting given their expansion plans in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area and key PGA Tour locations across the country,” said tournament chairman Bobby Patton in a news release. “For us to celebrate our 70th and, looking ahead, 75th anniversary with Dean & DeLuca means a lot to Colonial Country Club and the Fort Worth community.”

Crowne Plaza Hotels and Resorts has been the title sponsor of the tournament since 2006, replacing Bank of America, the title sponsor the previous four years.

“We are very pleased to introduce Dean & Deluca as the new title sponsor of one of the most historic and prestigious tournaments on tour,” said PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem. “Dean & DeLuca is recognized for its uncompromising commitment to excellence and customer service in the gourmet food industry and we look forward to working with their team to integrate their brand, products and expertise into the tournament.”

The Dean & DeLuca Invitational is among the PGA Tour leaders in charitable giving, including a record $9.1 million awarded to charities in 2015. The tournament has generated $80 million in cash and services for more than 150 organizations over the past two decades.

“We are delighted to welcome Dean & DeLuca as the sponsor for such a time honored tradition here in Fort Worth,” said Mayor Betsy Price. “Dean & DeLuca’s commitment to invest in our community in this way means that the annual tournament at Colonial will continue proudly like it has for the last 70 years.”

For Dean & DeLuca, the title sponsorship will put a public face on a brand that, until recently, was primarily marketed in the northeast, along with some international outlets. Acquired by Thailand-based mixed-use real estate developer Pace Development Corp. in 2014 for $140 million, plans were immediately announced for expansion.

The company was founded by Giorgio DeLuca and Joel B. Dean.in 1977 in New York with an emphasis on specialty foods from around the world. Sales reached $51 million in 1999. While the company’s footprint has remained relatively small – at least until now – they are often credited with revolutionizing American food culture via their passion for food, innovative merchandising and aesthetic sensibility. With several shops in the trendy Greenwich Village and SoHo areas of Manhattan, Dean & DeLuca has found its way in several novels, television shows and films.



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