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MONEY TROUBLE

There have been financial problems surfacing. The Chennai team failed to take off. While the website says ‘sold out’, the majority of the tickets for the event have been given out. Some of the Indian players are slated to be paid on Monday before they take to the court in the evening. here are murmurs about the financial commitment of some investors. However, investors from Punjab who have been in touch with this writer were looking to get involved as they believed that the cost of a team will go up like cricket’s IPL and they will sell for a profit. During the five-year lock in period, they expect the business model to yield consistent revenue.

While there is a lot of presumed valuation of IPL teams, records filed with the Registrar of Companies show that only three teams – Jaipur, Kolkata and Delhi – have registered a profit in the financial year 2013-14 (between ` 10-15 crore). Given the scramble to find sponsors and get the Champions Tennis League off the ground, I am sceptical about the return on investment.

Bhupathi and Amritraj must be commended for their drive and effort in putting up these ‘glorified exhibitions’. For quality sporting content starved markets like India, these may well click. The crux, however, lies in the business model. Many a league has been announced and failed to take off in India. Badminton, despite the best of players, is on hold after one edition. Tennis is now rolling its dice.

(HT Media)

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