The cash-rich Indian Premier League— as a product and brand— has emerged as one of the most profitable arms of cricket. Since its inception in 2008, the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s brainchild has risen by leaps and bounds to be adequately represented by the title sponsors bragging rights to cricket’s most profitable competition.
The title sponsor fees of IPL have strategic importance to the BCCI and the companies wanting the gig. So far, two companies had the most extended contract with BCCI’s cash-rich T20 league— Pepsi and Vivo. But those two had to unexpectedly terminate their agreement due to spot-fixing allegations and border politics.
The large viewership of this lucrative sport has lured brands and MNCs to bid on the title sponsorship. The title sponsorship forms a crucial key to the IPL's revenue-sharing agreement with the franchises— a fraction of the title sponsorship money goes to the ten franchises.
Here’s a timeline of IPL title sponsors fees over the years 2008 to 2023:
|Tenure||2008 to 2012|
|Fees||INR 40 Crore per annum|
The Delhi-based then India's largest real estate firm, DLF, was the sponsor of the first-ever edition of the Indian Premier League in 2008. Signing a four-year deal with BCCI, DLF bagged the bid by paying BCCI INR 40 crore per annum and became a household name. It was a clever move for the company as it instantly came into the limelight— mainly as the first brand to become the title sponsor of IPL. DLF remained the title sponsor till 2012, and as the deal ended in 2012, the company decided not to renew it.
|Tenure||2013 to 2015|
|Fees||INR 79.4 Crore per annum|
After DLF's contract with BCCI terminated, the soft drink giant Pepsi took over from DLF and grabbed the sponsorship rights at INR 396 Crore for five years. The second brand sponsor of IPL had the contract till 2017, but the FMCG giant had to step down in 2015 owing to the spot-fixing allegations swirling around. In 2015, an infamous match-fixing scandal in the IPL came, which led to the suspension of two eminent teams from the IPL— the Chennai Super Kings and the Rajasthan Royals were suspended for two years by the Lodha Committee. After this, Pepsi terminated the contract of 5 years in just three years only. This implies that the multinational beverage company just paid INR 238.2 crores to BCCI for the three years it served as the title sponsor of IPL in 2013, 2014, and 2015.
|Tenure||2016 to 2017|
|Fees||INR 100 Crores per annum|
When Pepsi walked out of the contract two years before its termination, the BCCI was in a spot of bother to fill the void. But that void was seen as a golden opportunity by the Chinese mobile company VIVO, who jumped in and grabbed the opportunity to sponsor IPL. Vivo bought rights for the remaining two years of the previous contract from Pepsi by paying INR 100 crores till 2017. The mobile company heavily benefitted from this deal as their sales skyrocketed in the Indian market.
|Tenure||2018 to 2019|
|Fees||INR 439.8 Crores per annum|
Following the resounding success of their previous two-year deal, VIVO renewed and gained the title rights for five years. The Chinese mobile company upped the bar to seal the agreement by paying a whopping INR 2,199 crore and outbid their business rivals Oppo. This meant the company paid a massive amount of INR 439.8 crores annually. However, Vivo could not complete its five-year contract with BCCI because of escalating Indo-China border tensions. In 2020, the Sino-Indian diplomatic relations got sour, and Vivo pulled out as an IPL sponsor before the Indo-China Galwan Valley face-off. The growing anti-Chinese sentiments forced Vivo to back off and call a premature end to the contract in 2020.
|Fees||INR 222 Crores per annum|
After Vivo prematurely sacked the agreement following a public backlash, the fantasy sports platform Dream 11 in 2020 took its place. After the Chinese mobile manufacturing company, Vivo, dropped the contract due to the Indo-China tension, Dream 11 came on board and made a deal for INR 222 Crore. The fantasy sports platform had a face-off against one of India’s heavyweights— the Tata Group and Edtech startups such as Byju’s and Unacademy— and bagged the bid, and caused BCCI to receive INR 217.80 crores less from the previous contract with Vivo. With a clever marketing strategy and catchy advertisements featuring renowned cricketers, the deal with BCCI accelerated the fantasy game platform, Dream 11, to become one of the world’s top fantasy platforms.
|Fees||INR 439.8 Crores per annum|
With the hope of diluting Sino-Indian tension in the minds of Indians, the Chinese mobile company VIVO once again returned as the Title Sponsor for the 2021 IPL, paying the same amount as it paid before Dream 11. As this deal got signed, BCCI earned a whopping INR 439.8 crores for title sponsorship, but the Chinese manufacturing company again had to pull out after this year as the Indo-China border clash continued to haunt the company. With this, Vivo somehow served five years as the title sponsor of the Indian Premier League. That said, Vivo will also have to pay a 6 percent assignment fee for two years, which comes to INR 29 crore in 2022 and INR 31 crore in 2023, making Vivo pay INR 454 crore— a little over the annual sponsorship money initially committed by the company. The Chinese phone manufacturer wanted to commit to its agreement nonetheless, the military face-off between India and China in 2020 caused a large-scale ban on Chinese products in the South Asian peninsula and caused Vivo to step back.
|Tenure||2022 to 2023|
|Fees||INR 335 crores per annum|
One of India's largest businesses and most reputed Industrial conglomerates, TATA Group, replaced VIVO for 2022 and 2023 as the title sponsor for IPL by paying around INR 670 crore.
With an annual fee of INR 335 crores from TATA and INR 454 crores from Vivo, BCCI had a win-win situation as it is to earn a whopping INR 1124 crore for seasons 2022 and 2023. Of INR 335 crore per year, INR 301 crore is the Rights Fee, and an additional INR 34 crore is the cumulative fee (for an increase of 14 games). As one of the largest and most reliable industrial groups, TATA looks forward to promoting the sport across political borders.
|2008||DLF||INR 40 crores|
|2009||DLF||INR 40 crores|
|2010||DLF||INR 40 crores|
|2011||DLF||INR 40 crores|
|2012||DLF||INR 40 crores|
|2013||Pepsi||INR 79.4 crores|
|2014||Pepsi||INR 79.4 crores|
|2015||Pepsi||INR 79.4 crores|
|2016||Vivo||INR 100 crores|
|2017||Vivo||INR 100 crores|
|2018||Vivo||INR 439.8 crores|
|2019||Vivo||INR 439.8 crores|
|2020||Dream 11||INR 222 crores|
|2021||Vivo||INR 439.8 crores|
|2022||Tata||INR 335 crores|
|2023||Tata||INR 335 crores|
Who are the IPL title sponsors over the years?
The IPL title sponsors over the years are DLF, Pepsi, Vivo, Dream 11, and Tata Group.
Why did Pepsi have to step down as the title sponsor of IPL in 2015?
In 2015, an infamous match-fixing scandal in the IPL came, which led to the suspension of two eminent teams from the IPL— the Chennai Super Kings and the Rajasthan Royals were suspended for two years. After this, Pepsi terminated the contract of 5 years in just three years only.