Sahara to review sponsorship to Team India

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Sahara will review its sponsorship to the Indian cricket team, Group chief Subroto Roy has said.

Updated: March 23, 2010 10:10 IST
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New Delhi:

Having bid a staggering over Rs 1,700 crore for buying an IPL team, Sahara will review its sponsorship to the Indian cricket team, Group chief Subroto Roy has said.

Sahara had bagged the sponsorship for the Indian cricket team for Rs 400 crore for a four-year period ending December 2009, and had agreed to continue for six more months as Board for Cricket Control in India could not find any sponsors.

In the eventuality of Sahara discontinuing the sponsorship, BCCI may find it difficult to rope in a new patron given the mad rush for the Indian Premier League.

"No, it will not. Only thing we will see is our continuation of sponsorship to the Indian cricket team. We will sit on that and we will discuss on that. But on all other sports nothing will be affected," Roy told PTI on the impact of the Group's aggressive bidding to acquire the Pune team of the Indian Premier league.

Asserting that the Group, which is also sponsoring the Hockey team, would seriously consider (limiting) exposure to the BCCI and the women's cricket, he said, "We will take a conscious decision about it."

On financing the 10-year bid, he said there were various options and many Indian companies as also British Clubs have evinced interest in becoming our partners, adding that going public through an initial public offer in a year or two was also a possibility.

"We are paying every year advance to acquire a property.

So if you are paying advance, it is not a profit or loss account factor. So we can go even for an IPO in a year or two years.

"There are approaches from not only Indian companies, but within 24 hours we got proposals from some very big club of the UK. They want to join hands with us. There are many kind of opportunities," he said.

Roy, however, made it clear that Sahara group would keep the majority stake and said inclusion of a partner would depend on two factors --- really good people behind the organisation and a positive and exciting financial proposal.

He said the Pune team would not be a loss making proposition and it would generate operating profits from year one.

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