The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Monday issued an invitation to third parties for Expressions of Interest (IEOI) for IPL Title Sponsorship Rights for 2020. BCCI had earlier suspended their contract with VIVO for the 13th season of the tournament in the wake of the tensions at the Sino-Indian border, following which calls have been made to boycott Chinese products.

"The Rights are available for the period from August 18, 2020 to December 31, 2020. Details regarding the Rights and product categories in which the Rights are available will be provided only to parties who submit the EOI and are found eligible," read the IPL statement. 

"The turnover of the interested third party must be over INR 300 Crores (Indian Rupees Three Hundred Crores only) as per the last audited accounts," it added. 

The BCCI also stated that bidding the highest amount may not fetch the rights for a company if the board is not satisfied with its plans on commercialising its most precious property.

"...it is clarified that BCCI shall not be obliged to award the Rights to the third party which indicates willingness to pay the highest fees in the course of discussions/ negotiations with BCCI after submitting an EOI," the BCCI stated.

"BCCI's decision in this regard will also depend on a number of other relevant factors, including but not limited to, the manner in which the third party intends to exploit the Rights and the potential impact of the same on brand IPL...," the BCCI release stated.

"...(it) will be examined/evaluated by BCCI in the course of discussions/negotiations with interested third parties who submit an EOI," it added.

It can now be safely assumed that BCCI will get a lesser valuation for a four-month period compared to Vivo which had the rights for a bigger duration.According to the BCCI's norms for accepting the 'Expression of Interest" (EOI), "...turnover of the interested third party must be over Rs 300 Crore (Indian Rupees Three Hundred Crores only) as per the last audited accounts.

The audited accounts need to be submitted with the bid.

The BCCI also made it clear that middle-men or agents cannot enter the bidding process and "any such bids will be cancelled."

"It is clarified that marketing agency/agents are not eligible to bid and any bid submitted by a marketing agency/agent shall be rejected at the outset."

Since the suspension of the VIVO contract, many have emerged as frontrunners in the race. Amazon, Byju's and Unacademy are some of the leading names while earlier on Monday evening, Patanjali Ayurved confirmed to PTI that they are "considering" the possibility of joing the race. 

"We are considering this. This is for Vocal For Local and making one Indian brand as global, this is the right platform. We are considering into that perspective," Patanjali's spokesperson SK Tijarawala said.
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