The Indian cricket team may soon have to let go of kit partner Nike, as the cricket board and the sportswear brand are locked in a tussle over a contract renewal.
Nike and Indian cricket team’s jersey has become synonymous over the last 14 years. But Nike who has been the “Kit Partner” for the Indian cricket since 2006 is unlikely to continue at the current levels of the deal. The current deal for 4 years between BCCI and Nike is due to end on September 2020. And according to media reports, the brand is unlikely to renew the deal at the existing levels. Nike had pledged Rs 370 crores to renew the kit sponsorship with the Indian team in 2016. As per the contract Nike pays 87.34 lac per game currently. But due to the current economic downturn and continuously plummeting sales – Nike is not ready to commit the same amounts to BCCI for the next cycle. That is the reason; BCCI is likely to announce the fresh tenders in case the incumbent fails to match the current offer. Meanwhile, according to sources in the know of developments, in the current market scenario, it was only fair that the Indian board would look to issue tenders to see a fair battle for the rights unless Nike and BCCI agree to extend the current deal on the same terms and conditions.
Though Nike is yet to publicly announce the financial numbers for FY19 but according to reports the brand is struggling to keep up with others on sales front. In 2019, the brand decided to slash number of store in India to 100. During its peak in 2016 when the kit-partnership contract was weaved in with BCCI, Nike uses to operate 350 stores in the country. In terms of Sales, Nike is currently at number 3 position in India as per the last available financials. Puma is the current leader with sales of 1413 Cr in FY19 followed by Adidas. Nike in comparison is doing substantially less number on the sales front in India.