Bengaluru-based edtech firm Unacademy has been roped in as the official partner for the Indian Premier League (IPL) for three seasons, the BCCI announced. The sponsorship for three years will cost Unacademy INR 120-130 crore, reports suggest. The 13th IPL is scheduled to be held in UAE from September 19 to November 10.
“We are pleased to have Unacademy on board as the ‘Official Partner’ of the Indian Premier League 2020 to 2022. IPL is the most watched cricket league in India and as a homegrown Indian edutech company we believe that Unacademy can create a huge positive impact on the aspirations of the audience watching, especially the millions of Indian youth who are seeking inspiration in their careers.” IPL chairman Brijesh Patel said in a release.
Earlier, Dream11 outbid Tata Sons, and edtech giants Unacademy and BYJU’S to win the title sponsorship. According to media reports, Tata Sons had bid INR 180 Cr, whereas the two edtech companies bid INR 170 Cr. BYJU’S also sponsors the jersey of the Indian cricket team.
Commenting on the association, Karan Shroff, VP – Marketing, Unacademy, said, “We are delighted to become the Official Partner of IPL. Unacademy is a high-intensity brand that has disrupted the education and learning market with innovations and broken geographical barriers for Learners and Educators. With this partnership, we will double-down on our efforts to make Unacademy the biggest brand in the consumer-internet space in India. We thank the BCCI and IPL for the opportunity and look forward to a long and fruitful partnership.”
Reports also suggest that fintech company CRED may also have been signed as an official partner for the IPL 2020.
Earlier, the BCCI had earlier announced fantasy gaming platform Dream11 as this year’s IPL title sponsor, replacing Chinese mobile phone company Vivo.
Dream11 had pipped educational technology companies Unacademy and BYJUs to win the rights for a period of four months and 13 days with a bid of INR 222 crore.
While BCCI seems to have accumulated sponsorships of INR 360 crore this year, last season, the board allegedly made INR gins, the BCCI is likely to sign one more central sponsor but the revenues are certain to take a big hit this year.
Why Is Sponsoring IPL Important?
The IPL title sponsorship rights may be a perfect opportunity for companies looking to expand their global presence. Given the global nature of the IPL and the fact that it will be one of the very few sporting competitions which would be happening around the time could mean that viewer interest would be very high. The tournament is broadcast in more than 30 countries, besides digital streaming in even more countries through Disney+ Hotstar. The brand value of the IPL was $6.7 Bn in 2019, according to financial consultancy firm Duff and Phelps.