With the emergence of Pro Kabaddi Leagues in recent years, the popularity of this highly combative team sport in India is soaring. But the league is doing more than just proving the commercial viability of the professional sport. It is driving the overall popularity of kabaddi.
Interest in kabaddi continues to grow
According to data, interest in Kabaddi has grown by 14% year-on-year since 2015, while interest in the Pro Kabaddi League has grown by 33%. Making it the second most popular and watched sports league on Indian television after the IPL. In addition, consumers now view kabaddi as more “modern”, “innovative” and “entertaining”.
Elevation is a boon for fans and business partners
Smart television content production and packaging, as well as innovations in the structure, format and presentation of kabaddi, have transformed the way people participate in, experience and enjoy the sport in the Pro Kabaddi League. Extensive media coverage across India, celebrity participation and a complete revamp of the infrastructure have led to increased marketability of the league and increased viewership.
From a business perspective, the Pro Kabaddi League has created a platform that provides a high return on investment for sponsors. This in turn has facilitated the participation of many leading brands and has further increased the value of the assets created by the league. Now, with a longer league and a larger window of opportunity for consumer engagement and activation, the return on investment for sponsors has the potential to be even higher.
Sponsor Promotions and Partnerships
VIVO, the title sponsor of the Pro Kabaddi League and the world’s leading smartphone brand, has helped drive the in-venue experience for fans and the commercial value of live sports. VIVO offers fans the opportunity to sit in the perfect VIVO fan seat, known as the “King’s Seat”. Providing the best view of the game in a luxurious setting and capturing their experience on live TV makes it even more memorable.
Brands like Indo Nissin have also partnered to promote Kabaddi and have attracted a growing fan base by launching a special edition top ramen package that included Pro Kabaddi League player cards nationwide last season.
But kabaddi doesn’t just appeal to consumer products. The Association of Mutual Funds of India (AMFI) also expanded its “Mutual Fund Sahi Hai” investor awareness promotion program last season, incorporating images of kabaddi players into its television advertising campaign to connect with fans and make them more receptive to the association’s “Sahi Hai” messaging.
With the growing interest in Kabaddi and the widespread reach of the Star TV network, a new round of commercial deals could not only drive the value and marketability of the league, but also attract and grow the Kabaddi fan base in a number of different ways.