As many as 80 brands are leveraging the ninth season of Indian Premier League’s brand power which is estimated to be worth Rs 20,000 crore, in a bid to reach out to the consumers. Out of which the mobile handset makers have grabbed the maximum share of the airtime on official broadcaster Sony according to media reports.
Takeover by mobile handset makers
Apart from advertising, brands like Oppo, Lava, Micromax and LYF are sponsors of six IPL teams. One can’t afford to miss out Vivo, IPL’s title sponsor and Intex, the owner of Gujarat Lions, one of the two new entrant teams.
While Karbonn is the principal partner of the Delhi Daredevils, Gionee has associated with Kolkata Knight Riders, HTC is with Kings XI Punjab and Reliance Group's in-house handset make LYF has signed up with three teams--Mumbai Indians, Rising Pune Supergiants and Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Brand leverage by domestic companies
Apart from the handset makers, the tournament is witnessing a strong trend of domestic companies and brands investing in IPL T20 tournament. Home-grown denim brand and also a new entrant in IPL’s ad space, Spykar, is investing Rs 20 crore on a sponsorship deal with Rising Pune Supergiants. The team’s logo will be seen on the back of the player’s jersey. Hero Cycles, India’s largest manufacturer of cycles, have replaced Kingfisher as the principle sponsor. Gujarat-based cement manufacturer, Sanghi Industries Ltd has signed up as an associate sponsor of Gujarat Lions.
Noida-based healthcare product company Kent RO will leverage this platform for the first time by partnering with Rising Pune Supergiants as its associate sponsor. It plans to engage with fans through innovative initiatives. Other domestic companies like Oxigen, Finolex and Gulf Lubricants have invested in Pune-based IPL team as sponsors and advertisers.
FMCG pulling out all stops
This season is also witnessing a renewed interest from the FMCG sector where the brands are taking all measures to connect to millions. For instance, Mother Dairy, the milk and dairy products major partnered with Delhi Daredevils as its principal sponsor. The branding is seen on the team jerseys along with visibility at key spots in the stadiums. Activation drives involving farmers, consumers and fans are being launched and consumer engagement programmes are also being held at select company outlets in Delhi.
Cargill Foods India, the local entity of US-based Cargill Inc, is co-sponsoring Rising Pune Supergiants. The company will promote its sunflower oil brand Gemini through the team sponsorship. The logo will be displayed on the prominent side of the players' headgear and caps. Digital contests are being held through videos and YouTube for arranging interaction of consumers and retailers with the team. Sunrisers Hyderabad’s food partner Haldirams has set up food stalls at all locations where the team is playing. It is also going online for the promotion of its teams by running contests on social media and giving away merchandises signed by cricketers.
Allied Blenders & Distillers', flagship brand Officer's Choice, has tied up with Delhi Daredevils and Mumbai Indians as associate sponsor. The brand will be present on the lead helmet for the former and the back of the helmet space for the latter.
Sony is looking to rake in Rs 1,200 crore ad revenue during IPL season 9 against Rs 1,000 crore which it clocked last season. Without doubt, the dismissal of two teams-- Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals, due to their involvement in the 2013 spot-fixing scandal, clearly hasn’t impacted IPL on brand and sponsorship front with the entire advertisement inventory for all 60 IPL matches being sold.