Turbulence within BCCI affecting marketability of IPL

Turbulence within BCCI affecting marketability of IPL

IPL Trophy. (Photo Source: BCCI)

One of the biggest cricketing events in the calendar year, the Indian Premier League (IPL) is not yet witnessing the usual marketing buzz which is usually the case by early February on most of the years. While some advertisers have blamed demonetization, while others have cited the ongoing conflict within BCCI as the major reason.  “BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) is itself in a flux and that has impacted IPLs marketability at least till now,” Ashish Bhasin, chairman, South Asia at ad agency Dentsu Aegis Network was quoted as saying by the Economic Times.

“Besides, the currency ban has also made companies more cautious on spends,” he further added.The executives of advertising and media buying firms who invest heavily on cricket confirmed that no major sponsorship or marketing deals have been announced till now. “So far, the marketing buzz has been very subdued; that is unlike the previous years,” an official from the beverage industry was quoted as saying who has been a big investor in the cash-rich domestic league.  “We have not yet finalised our plans,” said the person who requested his name to kept secret.

A query sent to BCCI chief executive Rahul Johri remained unanswered till Tuesday but Rahul Gupta who is the president of ad sales and international business at Sony Pictures was optimistic that the IPL revenues will match its previous years eventually despite not getting off the mark in style.

“Three-fourths of the sponsors of last year will be back in season 10. The issues with BCCI are internal and will not impact IPL,” he was quoted as saying by Economic Times. In 2016, While the biggest T20 domestic tournament across the world earned Rs. 2,500 crore in revenues inclusive of ad sales and sponsorships, Sony earned around Rs. 1,100 crores from ad sales. Sam Balsara who is the chairman of Madison World accepted the current situation and said that the general mood in the camp is pretty low.

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“We are still recovering from the November-December (demonetisation) onslaught and people are not making big commitments yet. It will take a few months to get back to a healthy growth rate. The BCCI turmoil has also had an effect because what’s happening is serious,” Balsara said.

Delegalising 86% of currency in circulation in early November may be the foremost reason behind investors opting out in the run-up to the IPL but the experts feel that it will gradually gain momentum. Players auction for the 2017 season will be held in Bangalore on coming Monday.