Bangladesh Cricket Board struggling for sponsor, ‘there is no sponsor for our team right now’ declares CEO

Like others, Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has been hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic. Bangladesh cricket team is scheduled to travel to Sri-Lanka this month for a 3 match test series but the national team is struggling for a sponsor. 
 
BCB is not only without a sponsor but also without a media rights deal in place for the current cycle. BCB Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Nizamuddin Chowdhury has declared in local media that to finalize a long term sponsor in these circumstances is next to impossible. 
 
“There is no sponsor for our national team right now. No sponsor will come if the games take place. In such a reality, we’re looking for a sponsor on a temporary basis,” Chowdhury told The Independent. 
 
“…We will go for a long-term deal sometime later with the overall market situation becoming normal,” the BCB CEO added, saying “We’ve Sri Lanka series ahead. So we’re now trying to manage a sponsor for the tour. Later we’ll try to go for a long-term deal.”
 

BCB’s Commercial Challenges  – Media Rights Deal Ended, No sponsor for the national team

– Not only sponsor but BCB also has another huge challenge at hand. The USD 20.02 Million media rights deal signed with with GaziTV in year 2014 has ended in April. BCB at this stage does not have a broadcaster in place. 

– Due to Covid-19 BCB is yet to hit the market with the media right tender. This means, more than 6 months of revenues from the media rights partner for the board has already lost. Other than this BCB will not be paid by the previous broadcaster on account of cancelled series. 
 
BCB also does not have team sponsor since the month of January. The BCB’s sponsorship deal with Anglo-Dutch consumer giant Unilever expired in January and it was in the process of naming a new sponsor before the global coronavirus pandemic began. On January 21, BCB sought an Expression of Interest for a two-year long team sponsorship bid with a floor price of USD 6.5 Million. It however could not attract any sponsor before the home series against Zimbabwe, which forced the cricket body to take an interim sponsor in Akash, a DTH company owned by Beximco.
 

But the board is hopeful once the thing normalizes they can sort out all commercial deals.  “All issues including media rights will be resolved along with team sponsorship,” Chowdhury said.

Covid-19 has badly impacted Cricket Sponsorship Worldwide
 
The current commercial struggles are not only true for the Bangladesh Cricket. Almost each and every board world over is struggling commercially on account of their sponsorship and media rights deals. Just sample this –
 
– The world’s richest cricket board BCCI had to take 50% hit on their most marquee property IPL. After VIVO’s pull out Dream11 has signed for 222 Cr vis a vis 440 Cr deal last year. 
– The world’s most marketable cricket team ’TEAM INDIA’ could not muster KIT SPONSOR till date after NIKE’s pull out. The tender by BCCI could not draw a single bidder for the rights
– Sri Lanka Cricket has taken almost 30-35% hit in renewal of their sponsorship (Dialog) and media rights deals (Sony Pictures)
– England & Wales Cricket Board had organized series against the West Indies and Pakistan without TITLE SPONSORS as sponsor Spec saver pulled out
– Pakistan Cricket Board could manage sponsor for the just concluded England tour only at a last minute but with 50% cut
– Cricket West Indies does not have a media rights partner since last 6 months now
– Cricket South Africa lost various commercial deals
– Cricket Australia has announced million of dollar loses due to Covid-19
 
All in all, the world of cricket is completely and deeply impacted by Covid-19 pandemic and it will take some time for the board and the sport to recover.