Sporting business: An open field for entrepreneurs

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Sports is a growing industry in India. Sports is a growing industry in India.
SummaryWith IPL, IBL, Hockey League, etc, coming years promise more business potential.

boxing, shooting, wrestling, archery and companies are looking to sign them up to promote their brand or get associated with their company.

“People are now looking beyond cricket too and big sporting events happening in the country are also helping in the development in this area. India is set to host U-17 FIFA world cup, it hosted the Commonwealth Games in 2010 and also hosted the recently concluded Junior Hockey World Cup and these events will only build more scope in the area of sports,” said Chopra.

Jwala Singh, a national-level cricket player whose professional career came to an abrupt end in early 2000, due to injuries, has developed a business model around cricket seeking support from his friends in the cricketing world. While he runs an academy that trains children, he also runs a cricket league called Mumbai Amateur Premier League on IPL format.

Singh also organises cricket tours to places like Nepal, Sri Lanka and South Africa for kids thereby providing them with foreign experience and get them to train and play with international stars. Singh is also going to extend these trips to New Zealand and Australia from next year.

“Now we are trying to more towards business and preparing a programme ‘School Cricket Development Program’ where we will tie up with international schools in cities that are interested in our international trip programme. We will manage this cricket related international trip for schools where one week will be for coaching with international players and they also get to see the country and people,” said Singh.

Sports is a growing industry and with the advent of Indian Premier League, Indian Badminton League, Hockey League, etc and sports such as badminton, wrestling, shooting, archery gaining recognition and prominence, the coming years only promise more business potential and more entrepreneurship in the field.

However, those working in the field of sports say that individuals should not enter this field just for the bottomline and the industry needs credible people with good intent and good understanding.

“Internationally we have seen that when a successful player goes through a tough time their managers double up as soul-mates and therefore this industry needs such relationship. The credibility factor is paramount as at times managers are looked up with suspicion,” said Chopra.

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