The business of Indian Cricket.

With BCCI doing what they do best (ok, second best after packaging and selling Indian cricket) – buying time by deferring selection of the team for Bangladesh to the 20th of April, with the cricketers lying low as they too wait for the thunderstorms to pass, and with world cricket heading towards the business end of its (gasp!) stunning climax, the media’s been concentrating on the business end of it all as well.

In an article titled ENDORSEMENTS BY CRICKETERS AD NAUSEAM”, India Today (subscriber feed only) takes a look at how Indian cricket is doing and why the whole saga is as feverish as it is.

Its a nice piece and well worth the read.

A few snippets –

With 105 million cable TV homes in India, which add up to 500 million viewers, no marketer worth his salt can ignore a cricket-crazed country. The revenues from the icc World Cup show how the game has increasingly been monetised by TV rights. Nimbus paid $550,000 (Rs 2.5 crore) for the rights for the 1992 World Cup and clocked revenues of $2.5 million (Rs 11 crore). At that time, India contributed 20 per cent to the total revenues. The
current World Cup’s revenues tentatively stand at $300 million (Rs 1,300 crore) and India’s contribution is 65 per cent. Besides the rise in revenue, the number of sponsors has also gone up to 12, against eight and four in the 2003 and 1999 world cups, respectively. With cricket delivering ratings of 8 points, consumer companies have been chasing these eyeballs by both using cricket stars as ambassadors and buying ad spots for leading global cricket tournaments.

This has seen the emergence of self-styled talent managers who are in effect brokers trying to sell the celebrity to as many buyers as possible as the intermediaries get a percentage of the deals they crack. Since the lifespan of a cricketer is no more than 10 to 13 years, he tries to cash in as much as he can in this period, claim experts. Thus, no sooner does a new player come into the horizon, dealmakers rush to him with a sign-on bonus and a yearly contract. And there are no clauses about performance. Devraj Sanyal, director at Percept D’Mark, a firm that manages the endorsements of Yuvraj, Ganguly and Sreesanth, says: “Slowly, the performance clauses are slipping in. For example, periods when Tendulkar is injured, there is a slackening of the contract and numbers go down depending on non-playing time, etc.”

Also included is a factbox which assumes that typically, a player contracted by a sponsor wud spend around 5-6 days per brand endorsed to shoot the ads, endorse , make public appearances at launches etc. It uses that logic to work at the number of days that players are “off the wicket”..

M.S. DHONI Rs 8 cr 75 days a year spent on advertising 15 brands @ 5 days
per brand BRANDS ENDORSED Reebok, Reliance Comm, TVS, GE Money, Siyarams, Brylcreem, Titan Sonata, Exide, Castrol, Pepsi, Seagram etc

SACHIN TENDULKAR* Rs 40-45 cr 70 days a year spent on advertising 14 brands @ 5 days per brand BRANDS ENDORSED Pepsi, Cannon, MRF, Adidas, Sunfeast, Pantaloons, Audemars Piguet, G Hanz and Nazara Technologies * Signed two deals, worth Rs 180 crore each for 3 years, last year with two companies, which would manage his endorsements in India and abroad

RAHUL DRAVID Rs 13 cr 60 days a year spent on advertising 12 brands @ 5 days per brand BRANDS ENDORSED Bank of Baroda, Max New York Life, Hutch, Sansui, Britannia, Sahara, Pepsi, Reebok and Citizen All figures denote players’endorsement income per year

VIRENDER SEHWAG Rs 5 cr 40 days a year spent on advertising 8 brands @ 5 days per brand BRANDS ENDORSED Adidas, Boost, Pepsi, Nazara, Hero Honda, Sahara and Britannia .

SOURAV GANGULY Rs 5 cr 35 days a year spent on advertising 7 brands @ 5 days per brand BRANDS ENDORSED Chirag Computers, Hero Honda, Puma, TCL, Tata Indicom and Sahara

YUVRAJ SINGH Rs 8 cr 40 days a year spent on advertising 8 brands @ 5 days per brand BRANDS ENDORSED Pepsi, Microsoft, Hero Honda, SBI Cards, Seagram, Trent, Marico and Reebok

DINESH KARTHIK Rs 40 lakh 5 days a year spent on advertising only one brand BRAND ENDORSED Nike

No wonder Beckham’s never on the field…..

p.s. Homer’s post citing Wharton’s take on the business of Indian cricket.

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