Active Stocks
Thu Sep 21 2023 15:54:10
  1. Tata Steel share price
  2. 127.8 -0.39%
  1. HDFC Bank share price
  2. 1,553.6 -0.66%
  1. NTPC share price
  2. 238.95 -1.1%
  1. Power Grid Corporation Of India share price
  2. 201.8 -1.42%
  1. ITC share price
  2. 447.4 -1.24%
Business News/ News / Pro Panja founders to invest 20 crore

The founders of professional arm wrestling league Pro Panja, which will be telecast on the Sony Sports Network for its first season in July, are looking to invest between 15 crore and 20 crore over the next two years in the upcoming seasons. 

The company, Panja Sports Private Ltd, a business owned by Swen Entertainment, has invested about 5 crore for tournaments it has held so far over the last three years. 

The league was first launched in 2020 by Bollywood actors and producers Parvin Dabas and Preeti Jhangiani and has held two editions of ranking tournaments, and matches along with some promotional events. 

The sport, Dabas said, has a mass appeal and roots across multiple regions in India. Its most recent ranking tournament was held in Gwalior in July. The investments, so far, have been organically funded by the business and will be going forward as well. The company could look at strategic investors at a later date.

“While we will host the events in metro cities, a large part of the viewers of the sport lie in tier II and III cities, and we intend to capture that with Hindi commentary. We expect the league to be profitable by the third year, and the teams by the fourth year," Dabas told Mint.

The league will have six teams of arm wrestlers from India competing across multiple weight categories and will be held over 17-day. For now it has signed two new franchise teams, and another four will be announced in the coming days. The owners of the current teams are Punit Balan Studios Private Limited which has acquired the Mumbai franchise and Ned Ventures LLP, owned by Gautam Reddy, which has the Hyderabad franchise. Balan is a filmmaker and owns teams across some other sports leagues in India. Reddy is also the owner of the kabaddi league team, Telugu Titans.

“A lot of emerging sports - like kabaddi etc., -- have had to go through a lot in the early years. We have managed to have a lot of connect with viewers on social media in the pre-season matches and I think that will help us go a long way. There is a market out there for emerging sports because they connect with the grassroots. It is not easy pulling away eyeballs from other sports during any broadcast time but we are hoping to see some strong viewership numbers once the season begins," he said.

The Indian sports industry has registered a jump in 2022 with media advertisement spending on-the-ground and team sponsorships, and celebrity endorsements breaching the 14,000 crore mark for the first time, signalling a post-covid recovery, according to one report. Overall, while cricket accounted for 85% of all sports sponsorships, the remaining 15% remained with emerging sports like kabaddi, football, etc. According to the 10th edition of an annual report ‘Sporting Nation in the Making’ by GroupM, the sports industry’s total expenditure was up 49% to 14,209 crore last year, from 9,500 crore in 2021. Out of this, spending on sponsorships for on-ground, team and franchises, more than doubled to 5,907 crore, increasing its share in the overall pie by 12 basis points to 42%, from the earlier 30%.


Varuni Khosla
Varuni Khosla is a journalist with close to 14 years of experience in writing business news stories for mainstream newspaper companies like Mint and The Economic Times. She reports and writes on luxury and lifestyle brands, hospitality and tourism news, the business of sports, the business of advertising and marketing and alcohol brands.
Catch all the Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
More Less
Updated: 04 Jun 2023, 10:46 PM IST
Next Story
Recommended For You
Switch to the Mint app for fast and personalized news - Get App