It added an extra buzz to the FIFA World Cup earlier this year and now the mighty Vuvuzela is all set to make a debut in India. The Vuvuzela is part of the official Commonwealth Games merchandise, which was finally launched on Thursday after a two-month delay.
On the first day of the launch, Organising Committee officials claimed they had been able to sell Rs 1 lakh worth of merchandise from the inaugural outlet at the OC headquarters. The collective sound of Vuvuzelas being blown at the stands-the drone resembling the buzz of a thousand bees - was banned at sporting events Wimbledon for its noise value.
Even at FIFA World Cup, superstar footballers like Christiano Ronaldo had reportedly complained that it distracted them on the pitch. But Premier Brands, the official merchandising partner of the Games, said the Vuvuzelas will not be a problem in India.
“In India we are used to enjoying sports with a lot of noise such as a celebration. We cannot be compared with European sports fans,” said Suresh Kumar, chairman of Premiere Brands. The OC is also planning to request the Delhi Police to allow it to pass through spectator security at stadiums. Wrapped in the tricolours, the Vuvuzela would be sold at all merchandising outlets for Rs 150.
The OC is also in the process of tying up with Delhi's malls so that the items can be sold at the open spaces of malls and such counters, said an official. Initially, two vans carrying the merchandise will visit schools in the city and offer 10 per cent discount to students.
The merchandising contract has been mired in controversy after Premiere Brands pulled out of the deal a few weeks but it reinstated the deal some days ago.
The OC stands to lose revenue as delay has eaten into the sales time for these items. The products will also be made available through four ‘Shops on Wheels’. These moving boutiques will visit schools, corporate offices, major residential societies, shopping areas and other public places to interact with people through Shera. The ‘Shop on Wheels’ will also accompany the Queen Baton Relay for Delhi 2010 to make merchandising available across country. In addition, the products will also be available for online sales. The products cost between Rs 25 and Rs 300.