Fantasy sports platform Dream11 has bagged the title sponsorship rights for the Indian Premier League’s 2020 edition with a bid of ₹222 crore.
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IPL chairman Brijesh Patel confirmed to Sportstar on Tuesday that Dream11 was finalised after “evaluating the three bids that were submitted during the prescribed window earlier today”. The other bidders were e-learning platforms Unacademy (₹170 crore) and Byju’s (₹201 crore).
The eligible entities among those who had submitted their Expression of Interest (EoI) were asked to email their bids between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Tuesday. The Tata group, despite submitting the EoI document last week, pulled out of the race.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) was forced last week to invite bids for IPL’s title sponsorship rights following Vivo India’s withdrawal barely six weeks before the start of the tournament, to be played in the UAE from September 19 to November 10.
A combination of the Chinese firm seeking a reduction in the sponsorship amount because of the pandemic-caused economic crisis and the public sentiment in India following the border tension with China had led to Vivo’s exit. Dream11, which has been a BCCI and IPL partner for a couple of years now, also has a minority investment from a Chinese firm — Tencent Holdings.
Vivo India’s deal was valued at ₹440 crore per annum.
FanCode, a live-streaming app launched last year by the Dream11 promoters, is under investigation by the BCCI’s Anti-Corruption Unit for its alleged links to a match played by locals on the outskirts of Chandigarh that was passed off as a T20 contest staged in Sri Lanka.
A BCCI official said that since the Punjab Police is investigating the matter and the two sites are different entities, the on-going investigation won’t have any bearing on Dream11’s bid.