What shifting of T20 World Cup to the UAE means for sponsorship

Ayushi Kar New Delhi | Updated on June 28, 2021

BCCI President Sourav Ganguly (file photo)   -  PTI

Board President President Sourav Ganguly confirmed that the BCCI will remain hosts of the event

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), on Monday, confirmed that the T20 World Cup, scheduled to be held in October, will be shifted from India to the UAE due to the ongoing pandemic. This comes after the BCCI had earlier decided to shift the remainder of IPL 2021 matches to the UAE in September.

According to sources, as per the earlier plan, BCCI was looking to hold the matches in Mumbai, Pune and Ahmedabad.

Brand gurus have a mixed reaction regarding the implications the change in venue will have on the revenues for broadcasters and the BCCI itself from sponsorships.

‘No worries’

Santosh N, Managing Partner at D and P Advisory said “Shifting the World Cup to the UAE should not have a considerable impact. Since it is going to be held in the same time zone. Advertisers are not bothered by the geography but rather, whether the matches happen when most eyeballs are upon them, which is primetime etc.”

. “A crowded stadium adds an air of extravagance to the whole affair, that advertisers want for marketing, so they might in fact prefer the UAE,” Santosh said.

‘Sponsors not as gung ho’

Ajimon Francis, Managing Director at brand valuation consultancy Brand Finance holds a different view, there is an appeal for holding the event on  home soil that draws in advertisers.  Companies are not going to be as gung ho to sponsor  if it is happening somewhere else.

According to Francis, generally such tournaments are used as a platform for companies to make major announcements, rebrand themselves etc, thus calling for heavy investment as they have an immediate impact on consumer and retail sentiments. Thus FMCG, consumer durable companies might not be as keen to advertise in the UAE.  What is more likely to happen is that just like the last IPL, VC-backed start-ups may take up the mantle because they have money to spend, he felt.

According to Anuj Kapoor, Professor for Marketing at IIM Ahmedabad, “T20 shifting to UAE will bring more certainty: With Covid and monsoon as potential disruptors, there will be certainty in the minds of organisers and the audiences that irrespective of which team loses/wins - matches will go on.” Therefore Kapoor believes that a steady source of entertainment is good news for ad revenues and sponsorships.

Published on June 28, 2021

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