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The Hong Kong, China Tennis Association (“HKCTA”) announces the hiring of Calvin Lai as Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel, and Peter Johnston as Director of International Events, with effect on 6 May 2024.

At the first Council Meeting this January, three main areas of focus were identified (1) building an event team with the organisational competence to support the international events; (2) improve HKCTA’s organisational health, structural discipline. and corporate governance; and (3) player development structure.

Calvin Lai as Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel

With HKCTA having more than 50 staff, we recognise the need to bolster our organisational discipline, such as strengthening the organisational structure, HR processes, conflict management, etc; while building an audit function to facilitate improved management reporting.  This will come under the leadership of Calvin Lai. Calvin leads the business management functions in HR, Marketing and Communication, Legal and Governance.  He has a dotted line reporting oversight from HKCTA’s coaching and tournament operation teams; and office management.

Prior to joining HKCTA Calvin has led and managed the US securities team and ECM department of Freshfields Asia over the past 16 years.  Calvin is a tennis enthusiast and a corporate lawyer who spent a 30-year career advising corporates on listing matters and having vast experience in building corporate governance frameworks. Previously, he also worked for Sullivan & Cromwell and was an Executive Director at Goldman Sachs Asia.  In addition, Calvin is a Certified Public Accountant: State of Illinois, U.S (1996) and attained bar admission: US and Hong Kong qualified.

Peter Johnston as Director of International Events

The Hong Kong Tennis Open Event Management Limited (HKTOEM), a subsidiary of HKCTA, was established in 2014 to organize professional tennis events hosted by Hong Kong, such as the Prudential Hong Kong Tennis Open.  However, with a minimum of three mega events upcoming – WTA 125, ATP 250, WTA 250 – HKTOEM has reached a critical point where we need to build a stand alone event management team with separate a leader to run HKTOEM.

Peter Johnston has a wealth of experience managing ATP and WTA events worldwide, including the roles of Deputy Tournament Director at the Australian Open, Tournament Director for WTA Elite Trophy Zhuhai; Exec Tournament Director Shenzhen/Zhuhai ATP 250; Managing Director of ATP St Petersburg Open; Tournament Director Kooyong Classic Exhibition; Tournament Sales agent for Hansol Pty Ltd for the sale of the WTA Korea Open. Tournament Director Nur Sultan, Kazakhstan ATP/WTA Event; Executive Tournament Director ATP Zhuhai Championships; Managing Director ATP Tel Aviv 250.

His capacity to understand the importance of each component of a project and the role each plays in delivering the end product. i.e. Operations, Broadcast, Sponsorship, Marketing, Communications, Media, volunteers, etc., brings a level of international expertise that can set a benchmark for our own workforce to learn from and develop their competencies.  Moreover, he was the WTA Head of Asia based in Beijing. At HKCTA, he will lead our international tennis team and oversee our international events and related tournament operations. He will assume duties in the following areas of tour technical expertise, commercial strategy, professional development advisory and international liaison. His background with international networking, his technical experience of the tour and experience in managing tennis events fit precisely our needs.