IPL starts in two days and KXIP is still without a title sponsor

IPL starts in two days and KXIP is still without a title sponsor

"It is getting more and more difficult for Punjab now."

Andrew Tye
Kings XI Punjab’s Andrew Tye celebrates fall of Evin Lewis’ wicket. (Photo by IANS)

Time is running out for the Kings XI Punjab as the 12th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 is scheduled to start on March 23. Instead of the regular lavish pre-ceremony, this IPL will see the donation of the celebration money (20 crores) to the Army Welfare Fund. Meanwhile, the Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) franchise is still without a title sponsor for this season of the IPL.

The tournament will commence on March 23 as the defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) will host the Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore for the season opener, on Saturday at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. The Kings XI Punjab will begin their campaign for the IPL 2019 two days hence – an away match against Rajasthan Royals on Monday, March 25.

That means that the KXIP are just four days away from playing their first match of this IPL season. Kent RO, the water purifier brand that supported the team last year, had declined to renew the deal this season. And now Kings XI Punjab are still without a title sponsor for the season. The delay in getting a title sponsor has maimed the franchise’s profits critically. As a result, the franchise had to lower the price of their title, and yet no luck.

No luck for the KXIP yet

After everything, the issue regarding the title sponsor still remains unsettled for the Mohali-based franchise. The owners have set the price at less than 50% of the CSK or Mumbai Indians title price tag. While the defending Champions Chennai Super Kings remain with their profitable long-term tie-up with Muthoot Finance, the Mumbai Indians have managed to win back a deal with the Korean brand Samsung.

“It is getting more and more difficult for Punjab now,” a top executive in a media buying firm was quoted saying in Inside Sport. “When it comes to the brink, brands are smart enough to realise there is no buyer. Secondly, brands now will also not get enough time for the activations. Where is the time to make TVCs?

Where is the time for Press conference and activations? It is going to be a major, major loss for Punjab. No way they will get the desired value, which anyway was very low,” says the executive. “I will still maintain any deal for a brand will be a big win, win situation.”

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