Indian Premier League finances are not unaffected from the adverse impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India, broadcast partners Star India and other stakeholders are fearing some decline in the values of their sponsorship inventory.
But the two most successful teams of the IPL history are sitting pretty. Brands continue to back the champions.
The BCCI last Sunday had formally confirmed that the IPL 2020 will be played in the UAE across two venues. The announcement has forced the stakeholders into the operations mode. Sales teams are out in the market to fill the last few slots which were yet to be sold.
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is hard to get the benchmark values. The BCCI, which has dropped the IPL title sponsor Vivo at least for this year, is prepared to take up to a 40% hit as it is launching the tender process to find a replacement.
In such a scenario, Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians remain the most comfortable IPL entities with regard to sponsorship sales.
The Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led CSK have no sponsorship slot available for sale. All the 25 commercial partners, including the nine sponsors, have posed faith in the India Cements-owned IPL franchisee as the IPL 2020 heads to the UAE.
Mumbai Indians’ sales team, according to market sources, has only one or two low-value slots for sale. In addition to two Principal sponsors Samsung and Colors Viacom 18, the Reliance Group-owned IPL franchisee has 18 more brands on board including three associate sponsors – Marriott Bonvoy, Jio and Astral Pipes.
The team with Blue and Golden colours has won four of the 12 IPL championship crowns to date, while the Dhoni’s Yellow Brigade has romped home with three. The remaining five are shared between Kolkata Knight Riders (2), Rajasthan Royals, Deccan Chargers and Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Royal Challengers Bangalore are presently best placed among the three teams, which are yet to get the IPL trophy on their cupboard.