Billabong has announced it will be the official sponsor of the Brazilian ASP World Tour event, the Billabong Pro Santa Catarina, committing to a 7-year sponsorship and offering US$400,000 in cash prizes to its winners – the highest purse in Brazilian surf history.
The third event on the World Tour, the Billabong Pro Santa Catarina will take place from April 23rd to May 2nd in Imbituba, Santa Catarina one of Brazil's premier beaches.
"This is a further testament to Billabong International's support and commitment to Brazilian surfing and a personal wish to see us back again involved in the re-launch of the continent's most important and prestigious surfing event," commented Chris Kypriotis, Billabong South America President. "It has always been my vision to put together a world class event, truly worthy of the quality of Brazilian surfers and widespread passion for our sport. Billabong is more than happy to be welcoming the surfing family to this stop and putting Brazil in the heart of our Billabong Pro events."
As a top professional contest it will host the brightest stars of the surfing world, including current ratings leader Taj Burrow (AUS) defending World Champion Mick Fanning (AUS), 3-time World Champ Andy Irons (USA), current Triple Crown winner Joel Parkinson (AUS) and 9-time World Champ Kelly Slater, fresh off a win at Bells Beach Australia.
During the event, the city of Imbituba in Santa Catarina will become the national capital of surf and its idyllic beaches will host a of activities aimed at promoting beach culture, environmental awareness and to provide entertainment to surf competitors and supporters. In addition, there will be an area dedicated to movie exhibitions, lounge rooms and a main arena, where DJ sets and art exhibitions will take place.
As a way of championing environmental awareness, Billabong partnered with the Conservation Center of Bowhead Whales, who will carry out special lectures at the "ecology" space, created inside the main arena, where volunteers will have the opportunity to plant trees in Vila Beach and to help with cleaning out the beach space and learning about recyclable waste collection.
In order to offset carbon emissions during the event, ASP partnered with Carbon Clean Brazil. The offset will be carried out by planting native species, which will recover damaged areas of the Atlantic rainforest.
Due to the short time till the contest begins, the award-winning Billabong webcast production team will not be in attendance this first year. Billabong will be providing the English language commentators and for the official URL to the English LIVE webcast simply link to aspworldtour.com/santacatarina.
Billabong Pro Santa Catarina, which is sanctioned by the ASP (Association of the Surfing Professionals), has as its main sponsors Skol Beer Brewery and the Santa Catarina State Government, by means of Fundesporte. The event is made possible by the RBS Group, with the support of Imbituba City Hall, Almasurf Magazine, Rede Atlântida FM, Sportv, Fecasurf and the Imbituba and Rosa Beach Surf Association.