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Rediff.com  » Business » Now, Starwood, Marriott join IPL frenzy

Now, Starwood, Marriott join IPL frenzy

Last updated on: April 21, 2011 15:23 IST

Now, Starwood, Marriott join IPL frenzy

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The popularity of cricket in India is wooing global hospitality firms like Starwood and Marriott to jump on the IPL bandwagon to sponsor teams in the ongoing fourth season of the T20 tournament.

While Marriott India Hotels Resorts has entered into a sponsorship agreement with the inaugural season winner Rajasthan Royals, Starwood Hotel & Resorts has chosen Virender Sehwag-led team Delhi Daredevils.

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Interestingly, these global companies are loosening their purse strings to sponsor teams on a bigger scale, rather than merely becoming a hospitality partner by having barter deals.

For instance, Rajasthan Royals has found a new sponsor in Marriott India Hotels Resorts with which the team franchise has inked a deal. Under the agreement, 80 per cent would be paid in cash and the rest by providing food and dining services.

"There will be lots of joint initiatives going ahead. The partnership is longterm," Rajasthan Royals chief marketing officer Raghu Iyer told PTI.

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Image: Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

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With fan interest in India on cricket at its highest after the World Cup win, the hospitality chains feel IPL is just the right opportunity to build their brands.

"IPL provides an exciting platform for a company like ours to build consumer connect and spread awareness of our hotel brands," Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels and Resorts

director sales and marketing South Asia Rajan Bahadur said.

Thus Starwood chose to sponsor Delhi Daredevils primarily in a cash deal, though it did not provide financial details.

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"The agreement with Delhi Daredevils has been signed for the ongoing season but we intend to have a long-term relationship," Bahadur added.

The hospitality brands' are also ensured of visibility with their logos being carried on team jerseys.

GMR Sports CEO Amrit Mathur said the partners are helping each other in brand building.

"Even Starwood is helping in spreading awareness and building the team brand through promotional events," Mathur said.


Image: Shah Rukh Khan.

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