East Bengal FC teams up with Quess Corp

Shobha Roy Kolkata | Updated on July 06, 2018

East Bengal Football Club, one of the iconic clubs of Kolkata, has entered into a new sponsorship relationship with Quess Corp, which sees this as a long-term branding initiative   -  Debasish Bhaduri

Two years ahead of its centenary celebration, Kolkata’s iconic East Bengal Football Club has got a new sponsor in Bengaluru-based Quess Corp.

Quess will hold a 70 per cent stake in the JV, Quess East Bengal FC (QEBFC).

The Club, previously referred to as Kingfisher East Bengal, recently parted ways with the United Breweries group. UB had also exited from its joint venture with the country’s oldest football club, Mohun Bagan.

According to Debabrata Sarkar, Executive Committee Member, East Bengal Football Club, plans are afoot to set up football training centres in various districts of the State as well as across the country; scale up the sale of its merchandise; and set up cafés on a franchisee model.

East Bengal FC currently has two training facilities — one each in Kolkata and Jalpaiguri district of West Bengal. It is planning to set up training academies in Goa, Punjab and in the North-East in a phased manner.

Sarkar lauded the role of UB in instilling corporate culture in East Bengal through its two-decade-long partnership. However, he said, East Bengal FC was looking forward to a new partner who will take an active interest in helping the club optimise its opportunities.

“We were having some trouble (with the UB group) regarding finances for the past 2-3 years; so we had been scouting for a suitable partner,” he said.

According to Quess, the association with the club is part of the company’s strategy to invest in long-term branding initiatives.

“We are excited by the possibility of contributing to the development of world’s No.1 sport, football, in India and at the same time to be invested in one of the best sports properties. Sports and business both produce winners when the partnerships are right and the investments are prudent,” Ajit Isaac, CMD, Quess, said in a press statement.

East Bengal currently has around 20-22 merchandise products on offer, including T-shirts, wrist watches, coffee mugs, caps, flags and wrist bands. However, the sale of these products still happens on a very small scale.

“We may be currently earning around ₹10-12 lakh annually from the sale of merchandise. We want to scale it up and this is where a corporate partnership will help us,” Sarkar said.

Published on July 06, 2018

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