Reliance, IMG Worldwide and Star India, Launch 'Indian Super League' for
Unrivaled League to Revolutionize Football in India
MUMBAI, INDIA and NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwired) -- 10/21/13 --
Reliance Industries Ltd., IMG Worldwide and Star India, today
announced the launch of the 'Indian Super League,' an unrivaled
football championship that will foster local talent and feature
international stars with the aim of making the game one of the
country's flagship sports and India a name to reckon with in the
The league promises to revolutionize the sport from the very get-go,
leveraging the strengths of all three partners who are focused on
growing the game to national prominence, offer Indian football
greater global exposure and eventually help India qualify for the
2026 World Cup.
Reliance, India's largest business enterprise, IMG Worldwide, a
global sports, fashion and media company and Star India, the nation's
biggest TV network and entertainment conglomerate, all have a storied
tradition of innovation, competitiveness and institutional commitment
that will propel the venture, in which all three own equal stakes.
The Indian Super League will feature eight city specific teams to
start with and will tap the burgeoning interest among the country's
young population that's increasingly seen taking interest in the
sport globally. The League will kick-off January 18, 2014 and will
run through March 2014, with a second window planned in the year.
Star India, which also owns broadcast and sponsorship rights, will
use its sports properties to take the League to millions of
households and also monetize the content on and off field. Globally,
football is the world's favorite sport, ranking highest in terms of
participation, number of fans, TV viewership, sponsorship and
revenues. Annual revenue for football globally is estimated at $28
billion, according to a study by AT Kearney. Star India, which also
holds telecast rights to BCCI cricket matches in India, will use its
superior content creation, packaging and presentation expertise to
attract and retain viewer interest.
"Football, with its largely untapped potential in the country, has
the opportunity to grow to an unrivaled commercial success quite
unlike any other sport. We hope the growing football footprint will
pave the way for the nation's sporting renaissance," said Mrs. Nita
M. Ambani, Chairperson of IMG-Reliance.
"The Indian Super League will feature international football stars
combined with good football facilities, rivalry between India's
biggest cities and the roar of a billion passionate fans," said Mike
Dolan, Chairman and CEO, IMG Worldwide. "It envisions creating new
football powerhouses in this part of the world, which will rise to
global prominence as the country and the sport further develop."
"India is hungry for its second sport. Combining top notch
infrastructure with our expertise in sports production, our attempt
is to bring an unparalleled football experience to our viewers," said
Uday Shankar, CEO of Star India. "For far too long, the Indian sports
fan has quietly waited for this revolution on the cusp of which we
stand today. Our objective is nothing short of creating a movement
around football in India. We want to put India on the global map."
"The Indian Super League represents transformational progress in
Indian Football that will be good for players, owners and fans
alike," said Mr. Praful Patel, Head of All India Football Federation
and Union Minister for Heavy Industries.
The league will be played in strict accordance with international
standards and regulations. The league will have world-class
international players play with the best from India. Each team will
have one marquee player, international players and the best of Indian
talent. Given India's burgeoning interest in football and the
country's long association with the sport, the Indian Super League is
on the threshold of launching a revolutionary new football culture in
The Indian Super League will also implement various football
development projects aimed at holistic development of the sport in
the country, including engaging with the masses to get them excited
about football, encouraging families to regularly involve their
children in football, creating an infrastructure to identify talented
footballers at a young age and groom them into elite professionals
and creating a critical mass of highly talented coaches to work at
all levels of football in India.
IMG Worldwide is a global sports, fashion and media
business, with 3,500 employees operating in more than 30 countries
around the globe. IMG's areas of expertise are diverse and wide
ranging: IMG College; IMG's Joint Ventures in India, Brazil, China
and Turkey; IMG Media; IMG Events and Federations; IMG Golf and IMG
Tennis; IMG Fashion; IMG Models; IMG Art+Commerce; IMG Clients; IMG
Academy; IMG Consulting and IMG Licensing. More information is
available at www.img.com. Follow us on Twitter:@IMG_Worldwide and
Press spacebar to pause and continue. Press esc to stop.