Brand IPL pitches at a slower pace; league valuations grew 13.5% in 2019

Topics IPL | IPL 2020 | Star TV

In a year packed with cricketing events, the 12-year-old Indian Premier League (IPL) saw brand valuations rise to Rs 47,500 crore from Rs 41,800 crore in the previous year. While growth has slackened, this is a sign of the league’s maturity as it steps into the teen years said Santosh. N, managing partner, D and P India Advisory Services. The fact that the IPL held its own in a year that had the ICC World Cup and that broadcaster, Star TV, saw advertising revenues grow by nearly 20 per cent are being seen as signs of its tenacity as a sports property.

The 2019 report on IPL valuations by Duff & Phelps released on Thursday said that the 13.5 per cent increase in league valuations (lower than the 19 per cent in 2018 and 25 per cent in 2017) shows the continued confidence that advertisers, broadcasters, sponsors, affiliates, partners and the viewing public have in the brand. The IPL has transitioned from a start-up phase to a steady stage, said Santosh.

A number of brands have found the league to be an effective platform with many now allocating a large part of the annual budget for the event. Dream11, the fantasy sports brand that has a four-year sponsorship deal with BCCI has gone from having a few hundred thousand users in its first three years to over 60 million users now and its revenue grew 300x over the period. Similarly Swiggy saw a 30 per cent increase in food orders during the matches. “We saw strong business results across key metrics including new user growth as well as repeat user growth,” Srivats TS VP Marketing at Swiggy told the D&P team.

The top two teams, favourites with audiences and brands are Mumbai Indians (MI) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK). The report said that sponsors and advertisers are willing to pay a premium to be associated with CSK and MI, as the number of viewers watching a match involving these two teams increases many fold. According to Santosh, the top four teams will hold an 
advantage over the rest even when they perform poorly, purely due to of the presence of marquee players.

The growth of the IPL in 2019 is marked by a sharp increase in its digital presence—be it in the form of viewership on Hotstar or the advertising blitzkrieg on social media that the league and its franchises undertook this year. However, the league has not been able to work out a tenable merchandising strategy, which if done right could propel valuations even higher. According to Santosh, merchandising will flourish if there is a better policy to deal with counterfeits and a reasonable pricing policy.



  • The 2019 IPL ecosystem is valued at Rs 47,500 crore. It grew by 13.5% over 2018,  18.9% in 2018 and around 25% in 2017
  • Star TV’s advertising revenues from the property grew by nearly 20%
  • Hotstar drew 18.6 million for the finals and 12.7 million concurrent viewers in a league match as compared to the highest number of 10.7 million during the 2018 final
  • Mumbai Indians retained its top spot in the league tables while Chennai Super Kings rose to second spot, pushing Kolkata Knight Riders down one spot
  • Brand values of the two top teams of 2019, Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings have gone up by 8.5% and 13.1% respectively
  • The teams spend anywhere between 5% and 15% of their revenues towards marketing and promotion
  • Chennai Super Kings is the only team that has never changed its captain, Kings XI Punjab is the only team that has changed its captain 11 times in 11 seasons
  • Rohit Sharma has been a part of the winning team the most times


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