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COVID-19 Affecting BCCI's Revenue: Reduced IPL 2020's Sponsorship Deal; No Kit Sponsor For Team India
Image credit: BCCI.
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COVID-19 Affecting BCCI’s Revenue: Reduced IPL 2020’s Sponsorship Deal; No Kit Sponsor For Team India

Indian Premier League (IPL), called the cricket festival for Indians, grabs the attention of all genres of people. Being the most watched T20 tournament, it is a huge money-making sector for companies as well as the Indian board by acquiring profitable sponsorship deals. But in the upcoming IPL edition, the COVID-19 disaster has led to a substantial revenue shortfall for BCCI because of reduced sponsorship deals.

BCCI got the huge blow after Vivo pulled out from the title sponsorship deal for IPL 2020. The Chinese mobile company turned down the deal after tension flared up in the India-China border and starting boycotting Chinese product moments in India. However, BCCI was successful in getting Dream11 as Vivo replacement but the contract is 50% of what the board earned last year.

Vivo paid the BCCI for Rs 440 crore annually but the fantasy sports have availed the title sponsorship at Rs 222 crore. Although it’s a big accomplishment for the board to get the sponsors amid the depressed economy.

IPL had two vacant places for the associate sponsors after Dream11 gained title sponsorship and the future group. The Edu-tech company Unacademy and fintech start-up CRED have filled those vacancies reportedly after offering Rs 40 crore each.

IPL franchisees gaining reduced sponsorship deals:

IPL 2020
(Image Credit: Twitter)

Three IPL franchises have roped in replacement shirt sponsors at lower prices. Delhi Capital’s principal jersey sponsor Daikin had turned down the Rs 14 crore deal soon after the tournament postponed in March. JSW, who is also the co-owner of the franchise, has picked up the sponsorship for a reduced price.

“We at the JSW Group see this as a tremendous opportunity to step in as Principal Sponsor for the Delhi Capitals. There are few properties that garner the viewership of the IPL,” said Parth Jindal, chairman and co-owner of Delhi Capitals.

Dubai Expo, who had signed as Rajasthan Royals for jersey sponsorship, dropped out after the tournament’s postponement news was announced. News network TV9 is said to have come in at a lower rate. The media company has earned a space in KKR’s jersey as well.

“It serves both the parties well. From TV9’s point of view, going with IPL helps their image in the prevailing news market scenario. It takes a while to be No.1 in the Hindi news space and this will help in their quest. Between two franchises they will have visibility across 28 matches,” said Arshad Shawl, founder Alliance Advertising. 

BYJU’s after losing the title sponsorship deal has also withdrawn their KKR’s principal sponsorship deals. Mobile Premier League has replaced them from KKR’s jersey.

“KKR is able to rope in a lot of sponsors which are endorsed by their co-owner Shah Rukh Khan, Byjus being one of them. But with their competitors Unacademy coming in as IPL associate partners, they would have their name on the mat, mentioned by commentators. It’s understandable of Byjus to move out, not wanting to play second-fiddle,” said the source connected to franchise sponsorship deals.

Team India’s kit without sponsors:

India vs Australia,
Team India. Image Credit: Getty Images.

Nike was India’s kit sponsor. Their deal, which expires in this month, was worth Rs 87 lakh per match. BCCI had invited new kit sponsors at a reduced base price of Rs 65 lakh per match but neither Adidas nor Puma, who picked up tender documents, placed a bid by September 1st, the deadline. BCCI had to find the sponsors Team India is set to tour Australia later this year.

Many financial experts are of the view that sponsors will earn a good sum of money during the IPL 2020 which is said to become the most-watched tournament in its history because people are locked in their homes.

Dream11, IPL
Dream11 will be the title sponsors of IPL 2020 (Credits: Twitter)
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IPL 2020: Tata Sons Stays Away From Title Bid As BCCI Declines To Block More Than One Category

IPL 2020’s title sponsorship bidding war saw Tata Sons which owns the company of the Tata group once again reminding corporate India of their interest in cricket from which they have consciously stayed away in the past as was indicated when they came up with an “Expression of Interest (EOI)” for the Indian Premier League (IPL) title rights last week.

Tata Sons were the front-runners to bag title sponsorship ahead of ByJu’s, Unacademy and Reliance Jio after VIVO left as BCCI’s title sponsors for IPL 2020 season 45 days before the start of the new season.

There were speculations that the highest bidder may not get the sponsorship rights from the BCCI as the board was set to look at various other aspects keeping in mind the backlash over smartphone brand — Vivo.

The mega smartphone brand left because of its Chinese ownership and BCCI was desperate to find a replacement around the same deal as it had with VIVO (INR 440 crore per year), but industry experts had ruled it out keeping the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in mind.

But finally, fantasy sports Dream11 bagged the title sponsorship rights for staggering INR 222 crores per year almost half of last year’s Vivo’s sponsorship.

Dream11 to be official partner for IPL
Dream11 to be title sponsor after Vivo pulls out from IPL 2020

IPL 2020: Dream11 Bags IPL Title Sponsorship As Tata, ByJu’s And Unacademy Loses

Vivo, the Chinese smartphone brand, has left the sponsorship for at least this year and since Dream11 has acquired rights, IPL will be known as Dream11 IPL 2020 in the 13th edition. Dream11 were partner before but on 18th August they were named title sponsors after successful bidding of Rs. 222 crore as announced by BCCI on 18th August.

Tata Motors
Tata Motors

The BCCI had earlier asked only those companies to bid who had a turnover of more than 300 crores. While educational platforms Byju’s and Unacademy seemed to be willing to pay more money, Tata Sons were also in the race as the favourites to bag the sponsorship considering it to be an Indian brand.

“Whenever the IPL comes out with a tender for new franchises, expect the Tatas to be in the race. Their perceptions have evolved over time and they see cricket differently now from how they used to,” say those who track the company closely.

It was in 2018 when Tata Motors first came on board with the IPL as official partners which came as the company’s first major association with the T20 league since the later’s inception in 2008, signalling a massive change of mindset of the Tata group.

IPL 2020: BCCI Refused To Allow Tata More Than One Brand

Tatas wanted to block three categories as title sponsor – meaning, three different brands under their flagship – whereas BCCI maintained that Tatas could block only one single category.

For instance, Tatas may have looked to block three brands for title sponsorship and the deal would have ensured the company enough profit through perimeter boards inside the stadium during matches and other branding opportunities. BCCI put its foot down and insisted that Tatas could block only one category and not three.

“That’s BCCI’s policy decision and any potential bidder has to live with it. Suppose BCCI would’ve allowed Tatas to block three categories – Tata Motors, Tata Tea & TCS – they would not have had the option of inviting any of the rival brands in the market – Mahindra or Tetley or Infosys, for instance – on board,” says an industry executive.

IPL 2020

IPL trophy (Image Credit: Twitter)

It is for the first time since the inception of IPL that a company with more than a dozen categories showed interest in bidding for the title rights. Until now, only single-brand companies such as DLF (real estate), Pepsi (beverages and snacks) and Vivo (mobile manufacturers) were contesting to acquire title sponsorship rights.

“What this episode has done is given BCCI an opportunity to look at this proposed Tata deal from a different viewpoint and look at the possibilities it can explore in the future where bringing multi-brand companies on board is concerned,” industry executives say.

Tata Group has not been associated with cricket very much but their reversal in decision allowed BCCI to mention that their participation in cricket will be observed keenly and they will be expected to participate more in future tournaments.

“Expect them to participate more in the game as and when opportunities arrive,” they add.

IPL 2020 was originally scheduled to commence on March 29 but was postponed due to Covid-19 pandemic but BCCI finally announced in 2nd August that the tournament will be played between 19 September and 10th November in the Emirates.

On 10th the Indian government gave permission, but on 4th Vivo pulled out and on 18th of August, Dream11 was named as title sponsors.

The likes of Amazon, Coca-Cola, Unacademy and Byju’s were also among the major brands in the fray for the sponsorship rights of IPL 2020.

Rs 201 crore bid from Byju’s and Unacademy’s bid of Rs 170 crore came second and third respectively in the bidding war for the sponsorship rights of world’s most popular T20 league.

Dream11 has made a three-year winning bid of Rs 712 crore in total and will continue as title sponsors by paying Rs 222 crore for this year’s sponsorship rights and Rs 240 crore each for the next two years if Vivo India does not return as the title sponsor of the league next year.

Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy Reportedly Set To Begin On January 10
BCCI. Image Credit: Twitter.
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IPL 2020: CAIT Writes To BCCI As IPL Title Sponsor Has Conflicting ‘Chinese’ Shareholder

IPL 2020 suffered a blow after traders’ body CAIT on Wednesday wrote to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) raising objections about the Indian Premier League’s title sponsor — Dream11 reportedly having stakeholders from China. Fantasy gaming platform Dream11 on Tuesday won the IPL 2020 title sponsorship rights with a bid of Rs 222 crore, replacing Chinese mobile phone company — Vivo for a four-and-a-half-month deal.

Dream11 has been one of the IPL sponsors for a couple of years now. Vivo and the BCCI suspended a staggering Rs 440 crore-per-year deal for this season owing to the border stand-off between India and China.

The fantasy-based sports platform from India allows to play fantasy cricket, hockey, football, basketball and became the first gaming company to enter ‘Unicorn Club’.

Dream11 Fantasy Cricket App
Dream11 Fantasy Cricket App

Dream 11 Has Chinese Company Tencent Global As Stakeholder

Dream11 is an Indian company founded by Harsh Jain and Bhavit Sheth in 2012 when they introduced freemium fantasy cricket only and in 2014 1 million registered users, in 2016 2 million users and 2018 4 million users were reported to play the game by installing the application in smartphone.

The IPL was moved out of India due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic this year and will start on September 19 in the UAE. IPL was shifted from India after restrictions and lock-downs due to Covid-19 which also resulted in the postponement of IPL which was scheduled originally to start from 29th of March.

In a letter to BCCI President Saurav Ganguly, Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) said:

“We are deeply pained to note that now Dream 11 has been chosen as sponsor of IPL 2020 which has Chinese company Tencent Global as one of the major stakeholders”.

Dream11, IPL
Dream11 will be the title sponsors of IPL 2020 (Credits: Twitter)

“We are of the considered opinion that awarding sponsorship to Dream 11 is nothing but a bye pass route to neglect the sentiments and feelings prevailing among the people of India against China for its regular attempts to invade the interests of India,” said CAIT, which is spearheading the campaign to boycott Chinese goods.

There are certain questions about Chinese company Tencent’s investment in Dream11, but one of the BCCI insiders privy to the development said that it is less than 10 per cent.

In April 2019 Steadview Capital completed a secondary investment in 2019 and apart from them investors include Kalaari Capital, Think Investments, Multiples Equity and Tencent. China being the origin of coronavirus and recent tensions at border led to the banning of Chinese mobile applications and call for boycotting Chinese products.

Dream11 Was Appointed Official Partner For IPL For 4 Years In 2018

On 2020 Dream11 won the rights for sponsorship for 222 crore rupees after BCCI announced in March 2019 Dream11 as official partner for IPL for four years. In 2018, Dream11 announced a partnership with ICC. Mahendra Singh Dhoni who retired from international cricket on Independence Day is the brand ambassador.

Dream11 Partner For IPL In 2019
Dream11 Partner For IPL In 2019

Dream 11 is an online game where users create a virtual team of 11 real-life players from both teams participating and earn points based on their performances.

The user who gets maximum points is the winner and Dream 11 offers both free and paid contests where a user has to pay a certain fee to win real cash. To participate in a Dream11 game, a user must be at least 18 years old and needs to get their profile verified using their PAN.

Vivo which was founded in China in 2009 entered the Indian market in around 2014, following which they became the title sponsor for two years starting 2016, which was extended to 2022 in 2017.

However the Chinese brand of smartphone who had acquired IPL rights for 5 years until 2022 mutually agreed to suspend deal for 2020 with a clause to resume it next season.

Hold talks with PCB in Kolkata, Mamata tells BCCI
Photo Credit: AFP.
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BCCI Likely To Ask Dream11 To Revisit IPL Title Bids For 2021 And 2022

Dream 11 acquired the title sponsorship of IPL 2020 at a whopping INR 222 Crore deal, but BCCI is likely to ask Dream 11 to revisit the bids for 2021 and 2022. Title sponsor Vivo had earlier withdrawn from the title sponsorship of the IPL 2020. The move from Vivo came after the rise in anti-China sentiment in the country after clashes in the Ladkah’s Galwan Valley left 20 Indian military personnel dead.

Vivo had a 2199 crore agreement in place with the IPL for the title sponsorship for five years 2018-22. BCCI reportedly earned 440 crores directly from Vivo annually, of this 50 per cent was distributed to the franchises. The Chinese mobile companies’ backout had forced BCCI to find a new title sponsor.

Vivo IPL 2020, Vivo IPL 2020 Full Schedule, Full Schedule, Team Squad, When and where to watch, live streaming
Photo by: Deepak Malik /SPORTZPICS for BCCI

We still have our deal with Vivo on, We haven’t closed it as it’s a pause: said a BCCI official

A BCCI official has confirmed that if Dream 11 wants to continue as title sponsors for upcoming years they have to revisit their bid. The 222 crores work for this year, for which Vivo backed out but their agreement of Rs 440 crores is still in place till 2022.

“It was always clear that the highest bidder may not get the title rights (it was specified by the BCCI before accepting the Expression of Interest from bidders),” a veteran BCCI official, told PTI on conditions of anonymity. “Having said that, Dream11 has bid the highest and are still favourites to get it, a few issues are still being ironed out before an official announcement comes.”

BCCI Likely To Ask Dream11 To Revisit IPL Title Bids For 2021 And 2022 1
Image credits: Google

“If it’s for only year 2020, then Rs 222 crore works fine. But it was a conditional bid for three years. We still have our deal with Vivo on,. “We haven’t closed it as it’s a pause. If we are getting Rs 440 crore, why will we settle for Rs 240 crore?” the official added.

IPL to begin from September 19 in the UAE

The IPL 2020 will begin from September 19 till November 10, a total 53-day campaign will see all the eight teams play in UAE. The venue this time is UAE and matches will be played in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah.

BCCI, IPL
IPL (Credit: BCCI)

The tournament was originally scheduled to kick off from March 29 was postponed indefinitely after April 15 due to the surge in coronavirus cases across India.

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Reliance Jio Declines BCCI’s Offer Of Title Sponsorship For The IPL 2020 After Vivo’s Exit

The BCCI had announced this Thursday that Vivo had withdrawn from the title sponsorship of the IPL 2020. The move from Vivo came after the rise in anti-China sentiment in the country after clashes in the Ladkah’s Galwan Valley left 20 Indian military personnel dead. The Chinese mobile companies’ backout has forced BCCI to find a new sponsor.

It is believed that on Wednesday evening, an official asked a Mumbai Indians representative present on the call about Jio’s interest in the title sponsorship of the IPL, reports the InsideSport. The Mumbai Indians representative turned down the offer saying that “they are not exploring any association like that”.

Vivo has a 2199 crore agreement in place with the IPL for the title sponsorship for five years 2018-22. BCCI reportedly earned 440 crores directly from Vivo every year, of this 50% was distributed to the franchises.

The last title sponsorship contract with PepsiCo was 454% less than the current one. The franchises are also suffering losses this term due to the postponing of the tournament.

IPL 2020, BCCI, UAE

BCCI Sends Proposals For Title Sponsorship To Big Corporates, None Show Interest

The BCCI has reportedly sent out their proposals for the IPL 2020 title sponsorship to Corporate giants but none have really shown the intent and interest for the same. The lists include PayTm, BYJU’s, etc.

“All of these companies are BCCI’s partners. They are Indian entities but we are little concerned about very strong Anti-China undercurrent. We don’t want to speculate on how people will react if any of them come on board”, said one of the BCCI official according to a report in InsideSport.

Vivo IPL 2020, Vivo IPL 2020 Full Schedule, Full Schedule, Team Squad, When and where to watch, live streaming
Vivo IPL 2020. Photo by: Deepak Malik /SPORTZPICS for BCCI

The new sponsors would definitely have the upper hand in the negotiations and it is sure that the rates will go down than the previous sponsorship. One reason also being the pandemic hit the market.

IPL to begin from September 19 in the UAE

The IPL 2020 has an ‘in principle’ approval from the Government of India to the BCCI to host it in the UAE. BCCI had earlier this week sent the teams a 16 page long SOP (Scheduled Operation Procedures) to follow before and during the tournament.

The teams have already started quarantining players and initiating Coronavirus testing protocols to comply with the rules.

Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Kings XI Punjab, AB de Villiers
IPL

The IPL 2020 will begin from September 19 till November 10, a total 53-day campaign will see all the 8 teams play in UAE.

The tournament was originally scheduled to kick off from March 29 was postponed indefinitely after April 15 due to the rising number of coronavirus cases in the nation.

IPL
IPL (Credit: BCCI)
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IPL 2020: Coke, Byju’s Likely To Bid For Title Sponsorship, Amazon In Race Too: Report

Vivo might have dealt a huge blow to BCCI ahead of this year’s IPL by withdrawing as the title sponsors but there seems to be no dearth of interested suitors for the Indian cricket board. Earlier this week, Vivo pulled out as IPL title sponsors despite Indian Premier League Governing Council (GC) announcing that it had retained all of its sponsors including Vivo for IPL 2020.

Vivo’s decision came just two days after the IPL GC announced their decision on the sponsors. The Chinese mobile manufacturing company was in the middle of a social-media storm after IPL GC’s decision. The BCCI and the IPL GC faced criticism for deciding to not cut ties with the Chinese company. There was a nationwide call to boycott Chinese products after the deadly clashes between the Indian and Chinese troops in eastern Ladakh in June.

Potential news sponsors for IPL 2020:

At the moment, BCCI is searching for title sponsors and the Indian cricket board does not have too much time in its hands. The thirteenth edition of the league is set to get underway on September 19 with the final scheduled to take place on November 10. Thus, the BCCI has just around a month time to find the new title sponsors and it looks like world’s richest cricket board would not have much problem in finding the new sponsors.

IPL 2020, BCCI,
                                                                           IPL 2020 will start on September 19 (Credits: Twitter)

According to Live Mint, Coca-Cola India and Byju’s are reportedly among companies that may bid for the title sponsorship. The sponsor will likely sign a deal for just this year as VIVO, which had agreed to pay ₹440 crore a year for the five-year sponsorship deal, may return as the main sponsor next year. Several firms, including Byju’s and Coca-Cola, are eyeing the opportunity to sponsor India’s most-watched sports event.

Online education startup Byju’s, which is also the sponsor for the Indian cricket team, is currently in talks with BCCI for the title sponsorship for IPL 2020. The report stated that the startup, which recently secured funding worth $500 million from multiple investors, has set aside ₹300 crore for the sponsorship deal. Coca-Cola India is also evaluating its plans to sponsor the IPL.

“We continue to stay invested in cricket and (are) observing how the situation evolves. We are awaiting more details before taking a decision,” the company said in an emailed reply according to the news outlet.

The report further quoted a top media buyers as saying that BCCI may not be able to command a similar amount that Vivo was paying, owing to challenging market conditions. However, the board might attract e-commerce platforms as IPL 2020 is coinciding with the festive season.

“With deep pockets, e-commerce firms such as Amazon are likely to be in the running to clinch the title sponsorship. It would be an opportune time for online firms to be visible and advertise as they also make a splash for flagship sales in October,” a senior media buyer told the news outlet.

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Also Read: If This Lad Was Virat Kohli, Everyone Would Be Talking About It: Nasser Hussain On Babar Azam

IPL, IPL 2020, title sponsorship, Tata sons
IPL (Credits: Twitter)
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Breaking: VIVO Pull Out As Title Sponsors Of IPL 2020, Set To Return In 2021

VIVO has dealt a huge blow to the BCCI ahead of this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) by pulling out as the title sponsors for the tournament. The thirteenth edition of the tournament is set to be played in the UAE due to the alarming coronavirus situation in India. The tournament is scheduled to be played between September 19 and November 10.

VIVO’s decision comes just two days after the IPL Governing Council (GC) confirmed that it has retained all of its sponsors including the Chinese ones for IPL 2020. But the Chinese mobile manufacturing giants have decided to end their ties with the BCCI for this year.

In December last year, VIVO retained the title sponsorship of the IPL after submitting a bid of Rs 2,199 crore over the next five years. VIVO had won the rights for IPL title sponsorship for the first time in 2016. But the lucrative deal has come to an end for this year. Cricket journalist Vikrant Gupta confirmed the news on Twitter.

He stated that while VIVO has decided to end the ties with the BCCI for this year, it would be back next year and would see out their contract that ends in 2023. Consequently, the BCCI will now have to find new sponsors for IPL 2020 and do not have much time for it.

VIVO has exited the IPL this year after finding itself in the middle of a social-media storm in the last 48 hours after the IPL GC said that it would be retaining all its sponsors for the 2020 edition of the tournament. The BCCI and the IPL Governing Council have faced criticism for deciding to not cut ties with the Chinese company.

There was calls all around the country to boycott China after the clashes between the Indian and Chinese troops in eastern Ladakh in June. The BCCI had promised to review the deals in the aftermath of the violent showdown but decided to stick with the sponsors.

Also Read: I Feel Good When I See Fear In Batsman’s Eyes – Naseem Shah Issues Warning To England

Also Read: Mitchell Starc Has No Regret To Miss Out IPL 2020

MI vs CSK, Pitch report, IPL 2020, UAE, MS Dhoni
Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni with the IPL trophy (Image Credit: BCCI.)
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IPL 2020: #BoycottIPL Trends After BCCI Retains Chinese Sponsors

Indian Premier League’s (IPL) Governing Council’s decision to retain all its sponsors, including Chinese mobile company VIVO has infuriated a huge number of fans across India. The IPL GC took the big decision after its meeting on Sunday. The thirteenth edition of the tournament will take place in the UAE from September 19 to November 10.

From Covid-19 replacements, 24-member squads, the IPL GC took several important decisions but their decision to retain the Chinese sponsorship has caused a huge controversy. Chinese sponsorship became a bone of contention after the clashes between the Indian and Chinese troops in eastern Ladakh in June. The BCCI had promised to review the deals in the aftermath of the violent showdown.

But to many’s surprise, the Indian cricket board decided to stick with the Chinese sponsors. As a result, VIVO will continue to be the title sponsors of the cash-rich league. In December last year, Vivo retained the title sponsorship of the IPL after submitting a bid of Rs 2,199 crore over the next five years. Vivo had won the rights for IPL title sponsorship for the first time in 2016.

“All I can say is that all our sponsors are with us. Hopefully you can read between the lines,” an IPL GC member was quoted as saying by PTI.

Meanwhile, the fans were quick to slam BCCI for their decision. The fans took to Twitter to express their disappointment over the decision as #BoycottIPL started trending.

Here are some of the reactions:

Big takeaways from the IPL GC meeting:

In addition to the decision on the sponsors, the IPL GC also approved the Women’s T20 Challenge – a three-team mini women’s IPL which will be played in the UAE between November 1 and 10. As far as timing of the games are concerned, all evening matches will start at 7:30 pm IST while afternoon matches will begin from 3:30 pm IST. There are 10 double headers in IPL 2020.

Each team will be allowed to have maximum of 24 players in their squad. The franchises have also been allowed Covid-19 replacements. If a player is unwell due to the novel coronavirus, he can be replaced during the course of the tournament.

Also Read: IPL 2020: Women’s IPL Get The Nod, To Be Held During Playoff Week

Also Read: IPL 2020: UAE To Host Tournament From 19th September To 10th November