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BCCI likely to exclude Chinese brands from IPL 2024 title sponsorship: Report

The search for a new title sponsor arose as Tata Group's deal ended after the IPL 2023 season.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is looking for a title sponsor for the Indian Premier League (IPL) and has established stringent criteria for potential bidders, as reported by Cricbuzz.

It has signaled its reluctance to consider bids from Chinese companies or brands to avoid associations with brands linked with countries lacking friendly relations with India. The minimum bid price for the rights stands at Rs 360 crore per year.

Although specific countries or brands haven't been explicitly named, the BCCI's decision stems from public backlash and a previous negative encounter with Vivo, a Chinese smartphone manufacturer. This situation emerged following the India-China border standoff. Consequently, Vivo opted to exit a five-year sponsorship deal, transferring the rights to the Tata Group.

The specific clause in the Invitation to Tender (ITT) document states, "Every corporate bidder must not be incorporated in a jurisdiction/territory with which India does not maintain friendly relations. If any corporation, serving as a shareholder or a proposed shareholder in the bidding entity, is incorporated in a jurisdiction/territory not in friendly relations with India, the bidder must furnish a comprehensive chart illustrating the shareholding structure of the bidding entity or its ultimate Parent Company. Additionally, the bidder must provide details concerning the ultimate owners/beneficiaries of all corporate shareholders within the bidding entity or its ultimate Parent Company, as a substantial requirement accompanying the Bid Documents."

Additionally, alcohol and tobacco brands, real money gaming (excluding fantasy sports gaming), betting and cryptocurrency, and parties which might offend public morals are also prohibited from bidding.

The ITT document, essential for participating in the bidding, will be accessible for purchase until January 8 and the bidding process is anticipated to occur approximately on January 13-14. The upcoming sponsorship agreement will last for five years, continuing till 2028.

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