Smartphone device brand Xolo today inked a three-season exclusive marketing deal with Liverpool F.C. for the Indian sub-continent and plans to spend about Rs 100 crore on promoting the game.
Under the partnership, Xolo will be the official mobile handset partner for the football club in India, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bangladesh. However, no financial details of the tie-up were disclosed.
Over the next three years, Xolo (homegrown handset maker Lava's smartphone brand) will invest Rs 100 crore on activities around the game of football.
"Over the past few years, the popularity of football in the country has grown, especially among the youth. Liverpool FC is one of the most popular clubs in the country and this partnership signifies our long-term intent to promote the game across the sub-continent," Xolo Business Head Sunil Raina told PTI.
The partnership will help us leverage the brand and its assets and allow us to offer users in India content from the football club on their handsets, exclusive merchandise as well as a chance to meet various Liverpool FC players, he added.
Founded in 1892, Liverpool FC is one of the world's most historic football clubs having won 18 League Titles, seven FA Cups, seven League Cups, five European Cups, three UEFA Cups, three European Super Cups and 15 Charity Shields.
"We are working on finalising various initiatives to connect the fans to the Club. We have a three-year roadmap for activities around the game and we are looking at an investment of about Rs 100 crore," he said.
He added that Xolo will work with Liverpool FC supporters and fan clubs in India to engage with a variety of football leagues, coaching camps and tournaments, bringing the Club closer to fans in India.
Citing the Brand Trust Report India 2013, Raina said Liverpool FC was named the most trusted football brand in India last year, finishing second only to the Indian Premier League (cricket) as the most trusted sports brand.
Over the last few years, corporates have also started taking keen interest in the game. Telecom giant Bharti Airtel sponsors many matches and has a partnership with Manchester United Football Club while Apollo Tyres is the club's official tyre partner in India and the UK.