The Women's British Open has been bolstered by a nearly 40 per cent purse increase for next month's championship at Woburn.
The 2019 WBO will be worth $US4.5 million, up from last year's $ US 3.25 million, making it the second richest event in the women's game behind the US Women's Open.
The prize increase – which comes in AIG's first year as title sponsor – brings the winner's cheque to $US675,000.
Yet despite the increase, the WBO will still be played for less than half of the upcoming $US10.75 million Open Championship at Royal Portrush.
R&A chief executive Martin Slumbers said the increase was part of a long-term effort to bring prize money for the WBO in line with that of The Open.
“This is an important first step and we know it will take time to move closer to achieving parity with the men’s game," Slumbers said.
"We will continue to work toward the long-term goal of a sustainable business model, but we can’t do it alone and the support of fans, sponsors and media are all key to achieving that success.”
Other women's major championships have also made strides in prizemoney growth, but they remain well behind the purses of the corresponding men's events.
The 2019 Women's US Open was played for $US5.5 million in comparison to the $US12.5 million on offer for the men at Pebble Beach last month.
The recent KPMG Women's PGA – won by Perth’s Hannah Green – was played for $US3.85 million while the US PGA Championship in May was played for $US11 million.
The WBO was founded by the LGU in 1976 and has been staged in conjunction with IMG, the world’s largest sports marketing company, since 1984. The event has been co-sanctioned by the LPGA and LET since 1994 and gained major championship status in 2001. It is now owned by the R&A.