How small & regional brands are hitting it big through IPL team sponsorship

Here's a list of 10 such brands that have partnered with one or more IPL teams this season

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Oct 11, 2021 9:05 AM

Being the biggest T20 league in the world, the Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket tournament comes with immense opportunities for advertisers who seek to target a massive potential audience.  

As per BARC India viewership data, the tournament clocked a record reach of 405 million viewers —almost half of the total TV viewers in India—across 21 channels that Star & Disney India aired the matches on. 

In terms of overall viewing time also, IPL 2020 has shattered all previous records held by any Indian broadcaster by getting 400 billion viewing minutes on TV.  It is believed that in 2021, the viewership number is set to increase outstandingly. 

Big brands and advertisers have always been associated with this mega-sports event with online gaming, education, e-wallets, soft drink and pan masala companies contributing ⅕th of the total ad volumes. Now, many smaller companies and one-two year-old startups have also flocked to IPL for better reach and pan-India presence through their association with different teams. Some of them being EuMe, Evolut, Fancode and regional grocery stores like Andhra’s Double Horse Urad Daal and Bengal’s Cake shop Mio Amore. 

“Brands are leveraging IPL beyond title sponsorships,” says Megha Ahuja, VP- Digital Media Planning, Carat India. 

She opines, “Brands are primarily on TV for IPL and on the ground. However, this time they are also taking a keen interest in the digital streaming platform. Most of the deals for IPL have happened as a combo package for satellite and OTT this time. Another smart brand engagement added to the basket is the set-top box solution. This makes it easier for the firms to compete in the circle of communication with a simple yet high impact.”

“Regional brands take a larger pie in times of Covid. Local products gain market share as bigger FMCG companies struggle with supply chain issues. Private labels have benefitted because they could manage their supply chain and address the stock shortage,” Ahuja explains. 

exchange4media has shortlisted 10 small and regional brands that have partnered with one or more IPL teams this season. 


Cake Store- Mio Amore 

Actor Shah Rukh Khan-owned Kolkata Knight Riders has got seven official partners as per its website ( Mio Amore (Italian for My dearest) is one of them.  

The cake store offers cakes, handmade cookies, vegetarian and non-vegetarian savouries, sweets and chocolates in West Bengal & Odisha markets, the company says on its website listing KKR as its “official treat partner”

The company founded by Arnab Basu, who passed away battling cancer last year, has over 300 stores in two states. Basu earlier held the franchise of the Monginis brand.


Fitness Startup- Evolut

Evolut is the associate sponsor and fitness partner of Delhi Capital team. 

Founded in 2020 by Hyderabad-based women entrepreneurs Vinuthna Gorripati and Meghana Nidadavolu, Evolute offers fitness, yoga and nutrition services. 

In addition to the sponsorship, Evolut is running a brand campaign throughout the IPL season. 


Mask & Backpack Maker-EuMe World 

Founded by Sanjay Parekh & Naina Parekh in 2019, the Mumbai-based company is known for its antistress massager backpack. 

It was the first innovative product launched by the brand which was followed by a range of travel and lifestyle accessories.

The company is the “merchandise partner” of CSK and Royal Challengers Bangalore. 


Pandemic-born FanCode 

FanCode, a Mumbai-based digital sports store, was launched in August last year, ahead of IPL 2020, to provide an affordable range of fan gear of leading sports brands. 

Founded by Yannick Colaco and Prasana Krishnan, FanCode offers a wide array of products that include official match jerseys, t-shirts, polo t-shirts, joggers, caps; accessories, wireless chargers, cups, coasters, keychains, wristbands, and much more.

The merchandise partner of the Punjab, Hyderabad, Delhi teams, Fancode has also introduced new apparel ranges for fans working-from-home and junior IPL fans.

Mumbai’s The Souled Store 

Mumbai-based casual wear brand The Souled Store is the merchandise partner of Royal challengers Bangalore and Chennai Super Kings. 

Founded by Vedang Patel, Rohin Samtaney and Aditya Sharma in 2013, the company designs, manufactures and retails apparel products with styles ranging around pop-culture themes and more. 

The company is looking to cross ₹1,000 crore in gross merchandise value by 2025. It was bootstrapped for the first five years and received seed funding from RP-SG Ventures in November 2018.


Tamil Nadu’s Towel Maker Christy Textiles 

“While we specialize in manufacturing 100% cotton towels, we fashion towels using other kinds of yarns on-demand. Each towel produced by us under our brand Christy Linen, represents the best that money can buy,” Tiruchengode, Tamil Nadu based towel maker Christy Textiles states on its website. 

The company is the official “merchandise partner” of Chennai Super Kings. 


Gorakhpur’s Niine Sanitary Napkins 

The Gorakhpur-based company, founded by Amar Tulsiyan, Gaurav Bathwal and Sharad Khemka in 2018,  shot to fame when it became an “official partner” of Rajasthan Royals in 2020.  

The team promotes the “Let's talk periods” campaign that includes interviews of cricketers on various complex issues associated with menstruation to break the taboo around menstruation. 


Fan Token Platform SOCIOS 

Socios, a blockchain-enabled fan token platform owned by Chiliz, a company whose cryptocurrency is used for buying Socios fan tokens and is traded on major exchanges, is the official partner of KKR, Kings 11 Punjab and Royal Challengers Bangalore. 

The platform, the brainchild of Frenchman Alexandre Dreyfus, sells “fan tokens”. By owning fan tokens, which cost £2, supporters can use the app to vote on decisions such as what to name a training ground or which song should be played at games after a goal. 

The app has got 1.2m downloads since it launched in 2019. For sports teams, the incentive is a 50-50 split of revenue when their tokens are sold or traded. 


Andhra’s Tenali Double Horse-Urad Dall

The Andhra Pradesh and Telangana based grocery store is famous for its urad daal (a type of pulse) that is primarily used for making south Indian dishes like dosa and Idli. 

In 2005,  the founder of Tenali double horse Krishna Murthy garu started Mahendra Dal Mill to process the bulk packing of urad dal. Pulses are known for their high protein content. For vegetarian people, pulses and milk are the major source of protein which are the building blocks of the body. 

Players are required to have a high protein intake for more strength. Perhaps that’s why the company is the “official stamina partner” of Sunrisers Hyderabad. 


App and website developer Yellow Panther 

Yellow Panther, a website & mobile app developer, is the “Official Supplier” or tech partner of Rajasthan Royals. The IPL team’s website and fan app is also designed by Yellow Panther. 

Based in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, the 1.5-year-old company with 28 employees has an office in England as well. 

Founded by Gunjan Parikh and Stuart Cope, the company also works on gamification, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and virtual reality (VR) domains. 



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