More than 120 odd brands have got associated with the bigger and better Pro Kabaddi League Season 5. Just into its fifth edition, this year’s Vivo Pro Kabaddi League came with many firsts – four new teams (total 12), more matches (138 matches, a longer season, new broadcast channels and most importantly, a brand name as the title sponsor.
Riding on the bandwagon of the indigenous sport, PKL had already established itself as the No.1 non-cricketing sport in India. The brands were not far behind to clinch the deals which would help them reach a much larger audience and an opportunity to be associated with the sport.
Vivo’s INR 300 crore five-year deal as the title sponsor was the clincher. There are other big names like Gillette, TVS Motors, AMFI (Association of Mutual Funds of India), Bajaj Electricals, Indo Nissin, Ultratech cement, Lux Cozi, Castrol and Royal Challenge Sports Drink, who paid Rs 12-15 crores each according to industry sources.
Capturing the sweet spot between the classes and the masses, brands kept capitalizing the value-for-money and the rising popularity of the sport translated into commercial gains for the major stakeholders – the franchisees.
Defending champions Patna Pirates owned by Mukand Infinite roped in Birla Gold Premier Cement as the principal sponsor and has H&R Johnson and Supreme Plastics as associate and co-sponsors, respectively. The team also had M-baazar and GW Mayfair as the fashion partner, Sport Sun as the sports-wear partner and Big FM as the radio partner.
Bengal Warriors owned by Birthright Games & Entertainment was backed by Future Group – Big Bazaar, and other associates like FBB, Golden Harvest, Tasty Treat, Koryo and Karmiq.
Bengaluru Bulls, owned by WL League, had Kent Mineral RO, GEM Paints, Karbonn Smartphones, BookMyShow, ARMR as the sponsors along with Kotak Mahindra Bank, Golden Harvest, low-cost airline Air-Asia India and family-networking application Life360 on board as brand partners.
Gujarat Fortune Giants, the Adani Group chairman Gautam Adani owned franchisee, have pulled Fortune edible oil, Jivraj 9 Tea, Simpolo Ceramics and Fogg as its sponsors. HET Graphics, Radio Mirchi 98.3 and Columbia Asia are the other partners.
Haryana Steelers, owned by JSW Sports signed sponsorship deals with Kent RO and Exide Industries’ Dynex Batteries as principal sponsors and Valvoline as associate sponsor, respectively. With brands like Insecticide (India) Ltd., overcart.com, 4U Sports and Radio City 91.1 joining as the partners.
Jaipur Pink Panthers which is owned by Abhishek Bachchan roped in Finolex Cables as the title sponsor, while Cycle Agarbatties, Muthoot Finance, Performax Activwear and Kalyan Jewellers joined them as associate sponsors. The franchise was powered by Lux Cozi and had partners like Paytm, Insider.in, Radio City 91.1, INOX, Narayana Health and Dida.
Puneri Paltan, owned by Insurekot Sports, had Force Motors as the principal sponsors and Kirloskar Pumps, Maxo Genius and SYSKA as the co-sponsors. Equio, Girikand, Zomato, Gabriel, Radio City, Aditya Birla Memorial and BookMyShow Café were amongst the partner brands.
Telugu Titans owned by Veera Sports’ Srinivas Sreeramaneni had brands like Sillymonks, TVS Tyres, Greenko, Gem Paints, Pratibha Biotech, Field Gear- Forever win, Mera hoardings and Radio City 91.1 FM on-board with them.
The U Mumba franchisee, owned by Swades Foundation, signed on pain relief brand Nise Gel, men’s undergarment brand Amul Macho, luggage maker American Tourister, Radio partner Fever 104 FM, Manforce, Marriott and Dome as brands on-board with them.
The Tamil Thalaivas franchise co-owned by Sachin Tendulkar had Muthoot Fincorp as title sponsor; Agni Steels Pvt. Ltd., Nippon paints, Smartron, Admiral, Maha cement as associate sponsor; eventsnow.com as ticketing partner and Suryan 93.5 FM as radio partner.
UP Yoddha owned by GMR league games roped in Tata Motors as its official sponsor. Air Asia, Karbonn Smartphones, Hindustan Times(Hindi), T10 Sports and Times OOH were the other brands to be associated with the franchisee.
The Dabang Delhi K.C owned by DoIT Sports management India founder Radha Kapoor Khanna had the most no. of brands to be associated with the team. Swechha, Water Aid, Plan International, Sparsh, CRY-Child Relief and You, WWF – World Wildlife Fund, Gold’s Gym, Gritstones, SportsWallah, Zoomcar, CASHurDRIVE, BML Munjal University, Sports Flashes, TREEBO, UBER, Carnival Cinemas, Vitamin Guru, Fever 104 FM, Nasha 107.2 FM, Moolchand, Insidesport.co are the brands on-board with the franchisee. Along with this many local cafes, bars and restaurants- Berco’s, The Crude House café, Lawn Bistro, Pranksters – F&B campus, Doosri Mehfil- Restaurant & Bar, Junglee Billi, Devs Restaurant & bar, Kocktails & Kurries, The Classroom, Raasta- Hauz Khas village, TFK café – The Flaming Kick, Pitstop Brewpub, Hotel LA, Hunger Nest, Show Stopper, Smaaash, Deez – D’s Biryani Corner, The Nook – Fine dining & premium bar, Chili’s American grill & bar, Molecule air bar, 7 degree Brauhaus, The grill mill, The Patiala kitchen, Capital Grill, Raasa, The Bikers Café, Superstar, The village deck, ZEST – bar & lounge,736 AD – Ancient café & bar, Boombox Brewstreet, Hunter Valley, Vinny’s and Mosaic were engaged as the entertainment partner with the team.