Knight Riders attracts investors galore
The Indian Premier League (IPL) is not just all about cricket and entertainment, but business too. Corporate houses are bending over double to sponsor Shah Rukh Khan's Kolkata Knight Riders.
It is the favourite team of investors - and one look at the team's jersey will tell you why. Brand Nokia shines larger than the team's name on it and this at the cost of millions.
Nokia spokesperson D Shivkumar told IANS: "Shah Rukh Khan and cricket - they team up the passion of India. This is the right time to hit the Kolkata market. We have sponsored Rs.400 million for the jersey of the Knight Riders."
Reebok, meanwhile, has sponsored Rs.450 million towards the team's sports shoes.
The Kolkata Knight Riders are also seen as the perfect team for launching new products.
Luxury watch company Tag Heuer, which Shah Rukh already endorses, was not one to be left. It has decided to launch its new range of sports watches after the second match of the Knight Riders at Eden Gardens ground here on Sunday.
"We were waiting for this opportunity to step into the cricket world since the day Shah Rukh won the bid for the Kolkata team. The glamour of the IPL, the craze for the Knight Riders and the first match at the Kolkata grounds is perfect for the launch," said Tag Heuer spokesperson Manishi Sanowal.
Of course, there are the usual official sponsors like Pepsico, Kingfisher, Hero Honda and City Bank.
"I heard that the minimum sponsorship amount for the Knight Riders is Rs 260 million. Till now the team has got the maximum amount of sponsorship, the reason being Shah Rukh endorsing so many brands," said Amitabha Bandopadhyay, joint secretary of the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB).