World Snooker is the commercial arm of the World Professional Billiards & Snooker Association (WPBSA), the governing body of professional snooker.
It is responsible for running and administrating snooker's professional circuit, including prestigious ranking tournaments such as the World Championship, UK Championship and the Grand Prix, as well as invitation events such as the Masters.
As the owner of the sport's commercial rights, World Snooker also negotiates sponsorship for tournaments as well as television contracts.
Snooker's popularity is growing rapidly in many countries around the globe. In 2004, World Snooker signed a deal with the European sports television channel Eurosport, to broadcast snooker into 51 different countries and territories, with a reach of 95 million homes across Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. Viewing figures are particularly high in countries such as Germany, Belgium and The Netherlands.
In the Far East, the snooker boom is developing at pace. The China Open staged in Beijing in 2005 was enthusiastically received by Chinese fans. A staggering 110 million people watched live on television as the home nation's Ding Junhui beat the seven times World Champion Stephen Hendry in the final to elevate himself to the status of national hero.
Snooker is also one of the most popular sports in the United Kingdom and is played regularly by over four million adults (UK population of 60 million). It attracts vast television audiences; the 2005 World Championship final was watched by a peak figure of 7.8 million on BBC television. 45% of the UK population (25 million) watched 15 minutes or more of the coverage.
The WPBSA also deals specifically with the rules and regulations of snooker as well as disciplinary matters.
Successful sports promoter Barry Hearn was appointed Chairman of the WPBSA board in December 2009, with Brandon Parker, Jason Ferguson, as well as the six-times former world champion Steve Davis, serving as directors.
World Snooker's headquarters are located in Bristol, in the south-west region of Britain.
World Professional Billiards & Snooker Association
111-117 Victoria Street
World Snooker also has a commercial base in London, England.:
14-16 Great Portland Street
And an office in China:
World Snooker China (Beijing)
Representative Office Suite 1532
12A Jianguomenwai Avenue
Tel: +86 010 8523 3059
Fax: +86 010 8523 3001