afaqs! news bureauPublished: 22 Sep 2016, 12:00 AM

Amongst sports enthusiasts, 45 per cent prefer viewing sports content online: KPMG CII Report

The report adds that there has been an upsurge in global female viewership for sports events.

KPMG India, in association with the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), has released a report titled The Business of Sports during the Summit on Business of Sports and Entertainment, held in Mumbai.

According to the report, technology has gradually made its presence felt through applications across the entire value chain of the sports business. The social media is acting as a game changer in the sports sector. A large number of sportspersons, too, use the medium to connect with their fans and endorse their brand affiliations.

Amongst sports enthusiasts, 45 per cent prefer viewing sports content online: KPMG CII Report

Among the devoted sports enthusiasts globally, 45 per cent prefer viewing sports content online.

According to the report, there has been an upsurge in global female viewership for sports events. In India, too, females increasingly comprise a significant portion of the viewership pie.

Amongst sports enthusiasts, 45 per cent prefer viewing sports content online: KPMG CII Report

Shrinivas Dempo, chairman, CII Summit and managing director, Dempo Shipbuilding & Engineering, says in a press release, "The last five-seven years have been the most dynamic for the sports industry in India with some fundamental changes. Sports not only provides an active branding and marketing opportunity to investors, but has also created value for fans all across."

He adds, "The addition of various sporting leagues in India has invited tremendous support from the corporate sector which now has a considerable presence in sports events. Against this backdrop, the CII is proud to organise the Summit on Business of Sports and Entertainment in Mumbai".

The report, which presents an overview of the global and Indian sports market, explores and assesses the sports ecosystem in India, identifies the various stakeholders concerned, and addresses their specific issues and challenges while attempting to highlight the common grounds between all stakeholders in order to enhance the development of sports in India.

The report identifies key issues facing the sports ecosystem in India across segments of governance, sports events, and infrastructure development among others, while offering recommendations to tackle these problems. It also presents a comprehensive view of the governance structure of sports in India, outlining the roles and responsibilities of major governing entities.

"India has a long way to go before it emerges as a serious player in the world of sports. The country is facing a moment of truth after its performance at the 2016 Rio Olympics. To initiate a strong foundation for the development of sports in India, the country needs to focus on three major aspects -- improving governance and infrastructure, building a sporting culture, and deploying a focussed approach to winning medals," says Jaideep Ghosh, partner and head, transport, leisure, and sports, KPMG India, says in a press release.

But, he adds, "The country's sports sector is going through a significant transition. In February 2016, the government accorded an industry status to sports infrastructure, which is expected to attract investments from the private sector, thereby not limiting its role to just Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities and non-profit organisations."

According to the report, the Indian sports sector is experiencing a sea change with all-round development initiated by the government, the private sector, as well as non-profit organisations. Increasing viewership, sponsorship, and participation in sports other than cricket, a rising number of sports start-ups, and the growth in rural viewership numbers are key trends driving the growth of this sector in India.

The report further highlights the encouraging aspects of the sports landscape in India. According to the report, Indian sports viewership (TV) numbers grew 30 per cent over the two-year period between 2014 and 2015. In 2015, the Indian sports sponsorship market grew 6.7 per cent year-on-year to Rs 5,190 crore.

Sports consumption in India is on the rise with leagues, as well international sports garnering strong support across multiple platforms. While India is a latecomer in adopting the league concept, it is rapidly covering ground; of the 11 operational leagues, nine were launched during 2013-16, and two more are planned in 2016. Regional games packaged in interesting league formats have been successful in garnering rural viewership as well.

According to the report, the early success achieved by league-based events across multiple sports indicates a strong potential for Indians to consume sports other than cricket. This growing popularity of the league format in India resonates across the report. The league culture is still in its nascent stages in India, in comparison to the US and Europe. IPL (Indian Premier League) established a successful model for packaging and marketing a league in India.

The report further adds that the year 2014 saw the emergence of some potentially successful leagues, including PKL (Pro Kabaddi League), ISL (Indian Super League), IPTL (International Premier Tennis League), and CTL (Champions Tennis League). These are encouraging trends for the future of sports. However, the business of leagues requires high investments and has long gestation periods.

In order to drive team success in leagues, the report suggests significant focus on fan engagement and marketing, celebrity influence, geographic location and better overall management apart from on-field performance. India has a long journey ahead in order to develop a strong sports culture. It needs to begin at the base, and that is what will build the future.

Click here to view the entire report