India To Launch Badminton League, Six Franchises To Play Next Year
The proposed Indian Badminton League -- "modeled on cricket's cash-rich, franchise-based Indian Premier League" -- has received 18 expressions of interest from corporates for its franchises, according to Ullekh NP of the ECONOMIC TIMES. Organizers said that they "expect 12-14 more initial bids over the next 15 days." IBL's commercial partner Sporty Solutionz CEO Ashish Chadha said that "eight cities are in the fray, and the organisers will finally settle on six franchises that get the best bids." The league will be held from June 24-July 11. Chadha said, "The base price (for each franchise) is 20 crore ($3.7M). An equal amount would be spent on marketing and maintenance cost with incremental proportion. We are expecting Hyderabad to go for at least 50 crore ($9.2M). This is just the licensing fee. But the amount will go up if you add franchise maintenance and marketing costs." Chadha "would not reveal the names of the companies" that have made bids. So far, the Hyderabad franchise "has attracted the maximum number of bids," followed by Bangalore and Mumbai. Chadha: "It is much more than we had expected." The cities in the bid race are: Delhi, Bombay, Lucknow, Chennai, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Pune and Nagpur. Organizers claim that the IBL, "with $1M in prize money, would be the richest prize-money league in badminton." Sporty Solutionz has bought the rights to organize the league for seven years (ECONOMIC TIMES, 12/5).