New Delhi: Indian Super League football promoters on Friday invited bids for upto three new teams to participate in its fourth season.
Football Sports Development Ltd invited bids from prospective team owners in 10 cities —Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Cuttack, Durgapur, Hyderabad, Jamshedpur, Kolkata, Ranchi, Siliguri and Thiruvanathapuram.
“Adding more teams gives us more opportunities to build geographical local connect. As the volume of matches goes up, there are more opportunities to connect in terms of viewership, deeper engagement and a sharper market connect from a consumer standpoint,” a person close to the development said on condition of anonymity.
The fourth season of the ISL is expected to start in October this year.
Interested parties can pick up the tender documents from 12 to 24 May on payment of Rs5 lakh. The last date to submit bids is 25 May.
At present eight teams are in the Indian Super League including actor Ranbir Kapoor’s Mumbai City FC, Northeast United owned by actor John Abraham, and Atletico De Kolkata, owned by Sourav Ganguly and Sanjiv Goenka among others.
Team sponsorship of football teams (including those in the ISL) brought in just less than Rs100 crore in 2016, according to a report jointly published by GroupM ESP, the sports and entertainment arm of GroupM, a media buying agency that is part of WPP Inc., and SportzPower, a sports business news company.
The league pulled in 16 central sponsors last season, including title sponsor Hero MotoCorp Ltd. A total of 1.28 million people attended the 61 matches that made up the ISL tournament in 2016. Star Sports is the official broadcaster of the league.
Football Sports Development is a joint venture between IMG, Reliance Industrial Investments and Holdings Ltd and Star India Pvt Ltd.