According to a BCCI official Unacademy has picked up the bid papers. Patanjali is also in the competition for title sponsorship rights. Vivo backed out as sponsor amid anti-Chinese sentiment in the country.
Edtech startup Unacademy, which is already one of IPL’s sponsors, is eyeing the league’s title sponsorship rights now and is set to submit its bid to replace Chinese mobile company Vivo this season.
A BCCI official confirmed that Unacademy has picked up the bid papers but refrained from making any further comments. “I can confirm that Unacademy has shown interest and picked the bid papers. I have heard they will be submitting a bid and are pretty serious. So Patanjali if they bid, will have competition,” the senior official told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
Vivo, which annually paid 440 crore, dropped out as title sponsor this year due to the Sino-India border stand-off. The BCCI is now looking at a lesser value between 300 to 350 crore for a period of four months and 13 days.
The official said Unacademy is a part of IPL’s central sponsorship pool with other companies like Dream11 and Paytm. “Yes, Unacademy is already in IPL’s central sponsors’ pool from 2020 to 2023,” the BCCI official said.
Asked what’s the difference between central sponsorship and title sponsorship, the official explained, “The central sponsorship doesn’t include jersey rights. In IPL, the jersey logo can only be of title sponsor and apart from that the various team’s sponsors. If they become title sponsors, it will give them rights on various branding properties.”
“The prominent space in the backdrop board in the post-presentation area, the backdrop in the dugout, and boundary rope. A lot of these branding opportunities apart from digital and media opportunities are part of the partnership,” the senior official said.
While no one from Unacademy was prepared to speak on this issue, an industry insider, who is privy to the Edu-tech company’s preparations to file a bid, said the firm is ready to take the big plunge. “Unlike some of the other Edu-Tech apps, Unacademy has 100% Indian investment. And four and half months is the perfect time to get associated with a brand like IPL and broaden their horizons in terms of brand outreach,” the source close to the development said.