CHENNAI: For a third successive season, the Indian Premier League (IPL) will have a new title sponsor after Vivo decided to part ways with the tournament, bringing on board Tata Group as its replacement. The decision was formally announced by the IPL Governing Council on Wednesday, which will see the board earn Rs 1124 crore for the next two seasons via title rights.
Interestingly, even though Vivo has decided to break away, they will still pay the BCCI Rs 454 crore as they had committed to a five-year deal in 2018 which would have seen them pay Rs 484 crore and 512 crore in 2022 and 2023. The Tata group will pay only Rs 335 crore per season, but will take over the title sponsorship.
In 2020, with two back-to-back IPLs scheduled in six months time, the Chinese mobile manufacturer Vivo had opted out of the IPL title sponsorship by opting to proceed with the force majeure clause. While the BCCI found DreamXI as a replacement for just Rs 220 crore, Vivo returned to the fold for the 2021 season which was held across two legs.
Vivo's existing deal with the IPL, which runs till 2023, sees them pay Rs 440 crore annually, and with the number of matches increasing from this season onwards following the inclusion of Lucknow and Ahmedabad teams, they were supposed to pay Rs 484 crore and Rs 512 crore, respectively.
However, given the market conditions, it is understood that Vivo told the BCCI of its intentions to break the contract. While the BCCI initially looked at issuing fresh tenders, it decided against because of the market conditions and looked at potential replacements. "It is hard to get such a big sum when the third wave has started. So, we tried to set up a deal which will work to everyone's benefit," a board official said.
As a result, Tata Group will pay the board a substantial amount (Rs 335 crore per season), while Vivo will pay the remaining amount including the assignment fee. "There is a slight change in the sum because there are more matches this season. Tata being the title sponsor will pay the majority with Vivo paying the difference, including the assignment fee," IPL GC chairman Brijesh Patel said. So, even though Vivo have opted out, for the next two seasons they will pay the BCCI Rs 454 crore.
"This is indeed a momentous occasion for the BCCI IPL as the Tata Group is the epitome of global Indian enterprise with an over 100-year-old legacy and operations in more than 100 countries across six continents," BCCI secretary Jay Shah said.
"The BCCI, like the Tata Group, is keen to promote the spirit of cricket across international borders, and the growing popularity of the IPL as a global sporting franchise bears testimony to the BCCI's efforts. We are truly happy that India's largest and most trusted business groups has believed in the IPL growth story and together with the Tata Group, we will look to take Indian cricket and the IPL forward to greater heights," he added.
Meanwhile, the IPL GC also issued the letter of intent (LOI) to two new franchises Lucknow and Ahmedabad. The two new teams will have time till January 25 to sign three players before the auction takes place in Bengaluru on February 12 and 13. While the IPL GC confirmed the venue for the IPL player auctions, it has decided to wait till February end before finalising the host cities for the tournament.