IPL Sponsorship: Are we overreacting?
BCCI has been under criticism after IPL governing council meeting on Sunday which decided to retain VIVO electronics as Title sponsors. Hashtags like #BoycottIPL and #ChinesePremierLeague has been trending since Monday morning. Boycotting Chinese products has been the sentiment in India since 15 June when border tensions between India and China which led to death of 20 Indian soldiers. Boycotting Chinese products and Apps is not a bad idea. It would definitely put strain on Chinese economy but we also need to understand sponsorships generate income for any event. They don’t earn out of any event apart from eyeballs. So the question arises “Are we overreacting”?
It looks like we are overreacting on the issue. During the COVID19, industries are running in losses because of the lockdowns. No industry is willing to spend 4.4 billion per year for sponsoring IPL. BCCI earns 4.4 billion per year since 2016. Apart from this, Star Sports earns 1.5 billion during the IPL for on air advertising. Another Chinese brand OPPO, is the co-presenter of Star Sports. BYJU’S, which is BCCI’S team sponsors are funded by Tencent Holdings- A Chinese Company. They spend around 3 billion on cricket. Paytm, Dream11 are also sponsors of the event.
Cricket always commercial thrive with the backing of big sponsors. Think about the people behind broadcasting a cricket match. Around 100 people work tirelessly during a match. They need to be paid as well. They provide us the state of the art experience of watching matches like Hawk-eye, graphics, sound, DRS etc. Not to forget commentators, who keep us engaged in the game with their excellent communication skills. They get paid by BCCI.
So the point is, boycotting Chinese products to hurt their economy is good but it is not wise to throw away the income generating opportunities. These are complex economic issues which has to be dealt sensibly. IPL contributes 13 Billion to the economy.