The Indian Premier League (IPL) is looking for a title sponsor, and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has set strict requirements for potential bids. Notably, citing its reluctance to be connected with businesses from nations that do not have positive relations with India, the BCCI has hinted that it may not accept proposals from Chinese corporations or brands. INR 360 crore is the annual reserve price for the rights.
Although no specific nations or companies have been named, the BCCI’s decision is the result of public outcry and a bad experience with the Chinese smartphone manufacturer Vivo. This predicament emerged during the border dispute between China and India. Following that, Vivo decided to end the five-year sponsorship deal and give the Tata Group the rights.
Here’s the specific sentence that states, “Each bidder that is a corporate entity must not be incorporated in a jurisdiction/territory with which India does not have a friendly relation,” from the Invitation to Tender (ITT) document. The Bidder shall furnish, as a material obligation, a detailed chart of the shareholding in such Bidder or its ultimate Parent Company and the details of ultimate owners/beneficiaries of all shareholders which are body corporate in such Bidder or its ultimate Parent Company if any corporate(s) which is a shareholder or a proposed shareholder in the Bidder is incorporated in a jurisdiction/territory with which India does not have friendly relations.”
In addition to betting and gambling corporations, the BCCI is also rejecting offers from businesses connected to sportswear, cryptocurrencies, and fantasy games. The BCCI has specified several requirements for disqualification, such as businesses that are either directly or indirectly associated with bookmakers and casinos, fantasy sports, cryptocurrency trading, cryptocurrency exchanges, cryptocurrency tokens, and alcoholic beverages. Notably, businesses that manufacture sportswear are subject to an odd ban.
“Partners involved either directly or indirectly in athleisure, athletic wear, and performance wear” will not be qualified, according to the ITT. According to the ITT, businesses that operate out of tax havens such as Mauritius and the British Virgin Islands will not be permitted.
The previous agreement with the Tata Group ended after the previous season, necessitating the search for a new title sponsor. The forthcoming sponsorship deal is scheduled to run for five years, or until 2028. The value that the Tata Group was paying for the first two seasons is in line with the reserve price of Rs 360 crore.
The ITT states that “Partners involved either directly or indirectly in athleisure, athletic wear, and performance wear” will not be eligible. Businesses that operate out of tax havens like Mauritius and the British Virgin Islands will not be allowed, according to the ITT.
Finding a new title sponsor was necessary because the existing deal with the Tata Group expired after the previous season. The upcoming sponsorship agreement is set to expire in 2028 after five years of operation. The first two seasons’ value paid by the Tata Group was commensurate with the Rs 360 crore reserve price.
Unable to Place a Bid:
(a) The bidder, along with any of its group companies, shall not: (i) engage in betting, gambling, or services akin to them in India or anywhere else; (ii) offer betting, gambling, or services akin to them to any individual in India; and (iii) hold any investment or ownership interest in any individual engaged in betting, gambling, or services akin to them in India.
(b) The bidder, along with any of the businesses in its group, shall not, either directly or indirectly, engage in the trading, exchange, or tokenization of cryptocurrency or any other business of a similar kind.
(c) A bidder who is involved in more than one brand or project category, with one of those categories related to tobacco or alcohol goods, is not allowed to submit a bid for those brand categories. The bidder may submit a bid for any additional non-prohibited brand category.
(d) The bidder who is involved in fantasy games, either directly or indirectly. To be clear, a bidder who is involved in or running a fantasy sports gambling business, including any of its Group companies, is not eligible to submit a bid.
(e) Those who are directly or indirectly involved in the athleisure, sportswear, and performance wear industries.
(f) Using surrogate brands to make bids is forbidden for bidders. Any attempt to utilize a separate entity or person to obliquely submit a bid on behalf of another company or person is known as “surrogate branding.” This involves using distinct names, brand identities, or logos, among other things.