The Bangalore-based educational technology and online tutorial firm, BYJU'S, has replaced the Chinese mobile-maker, OPPO, as the official sponsor of the Indian cricket team starting September 5, 2019. The edtech startup that was founded in 2011, a first from the category to win the rights, will sponsor the team until March 31, 2022. BCCI announced the change in sponsorship in July this year.
Virat Kohli's team sported OPPO's logo on their jerseys until September 2 — for the West Indies tour of the team. OPPO reportedly won the sponsorship for Rs. 1,079 crore in 2017, for five-years, outbidding Vivo mobiles' Rs. 768 crore bid. As per a Times of India report, the smartphone brand decided to exit the space and reallocate the rights to Think and Learn owned BYJU'S, at the same price point because it finds the value at which it acquired the rights in 2017 to be ‘extremely high’ and ‘unsustainable’.
As the new official sponsor gets on board, we pause to take a look at various brands that have sponsored the Men in Blue in the past.
The team was sponsored by Star India from 2014 to 2017. Reportedly, the Indian media conglomerate, now a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company India, was paying Rs 1.92 crore per bilateral match and Rs 61 lakh for an ICC match.
Sahara India Pariwar was the official sponsor of the Indian Cricket Team from 2002 to 2013 and ITC (with Wills and ITC Hotels brands) from 1993 to 2002. Sahara India, the Subrata Roy-headed industrial conglomerate was the first large player in the sports industry to have sponsored the jerseys. As per a report by KreedOn, the Sahara Pariwar paid over Rs 3.34 crore per international match to have their logo displayed on the team's jersey.
During the early 90s and late 80s, the team's jersey underwent a lot of kit changes, almost on a series by series basis. The jersey was decked up in various shades of blue, from light blue to Oxford blue to azure and ‘contemporary blue’ and yellow combination — sans sponsors and logos, in the early days. The advent of kit sponsor — Nike (since 2015, till date) — ensured consistency of the jersey design and sponsor's logo.
The other sponsors of the team includes the digital wallet brand Paytm as the title sponsor and Pepsi, Hyundai and Jana Small Financial Bank as the official partners of the team. Star Sports Network is the official broadcaster until 2023 for all the matches that the team plays in India.