New Delhi: Indian electronics company Videocon is reportedly keen to buy Indian Premier League team Deccan Chargers after the owners invited bids to buy out the cash-strapped outfit.
"Yes, we are interested and will place our bids for buying out Deccan Chargers," Videocon Group chairman Venugopal Dhoot was quoted as saying in Friday's The Times of India. "It's a good fit for our brand and will be used to connect to our consumers."
Videocon had previously bid for the Pune franchise in IPL auctions in 2010 but lost to the investment company Sahara Group, which bid $370 million; the highest purchase price for an IPL team to date.
Deccan Chargers, whose prominent players include captain Kumar Sangakkara of Sri Lanka, South African pace bowler Dale Steyn and Australian big-hitter Cameron White, is valued at $240 million but may go for a lesser amount due to a distress sale.
Deccan Chronicle Holdings Limited, which ran the Hyderabad team in the city-based league for the first five seasons, ran into financial trouble and failed to pay its players for the 2012 season.
Broad speculation in the Indian media about an imminent sale of the team was confirmed on Thursday when the owners took out a newspaper advertisement inviting bids. The bidding process is likely to be completed by next Friday.
This is not the first time that an IPL franchise has been in the news for financial troubles.
The Indian cricket board last year axed Kochi Tuskers for failing to make its annual payment after just one year in the league, reducing the number of teams from 10 to nine in 2012.
Other franchises have also had trouble running their teams.
Pune Warriors, added two years ago along with Kochi to the original eight teams, announced earlier this year it was withdrawing from the IPL.
Sahara Group indicated it was tired of the high-handedness of Indian cricket officialdom and announced its withdrawal of the sponsorship of the national tema but relented after a few compromises were worked out.
The IPL is also involved in court cases with Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab, which were scrapped two years ago over breach of ownership rules before being readmitted on a court order, pending a final verdict.