Sports management is the next big thing in India

Published: July 29, 2019 1:32:01 AM

The sports industry would require human resources of over 4 million by 2022

Sports management, sports industry, Indian Premier League, Beijing Olympics, Sports analytics, FICCI Vision Document 2014Proper statistics help teams, and sports teams employ analysts to enhance players’ performance, team management, marketing, decision-making, revenues, etc. (AP photo)

By Nilesh Kulkarni

The sports industry got a sudden boost in 2008 due to two reasons. One, the start of the Indian Premier League (IPL) and, two, Abhinav Bindra winning the gold medal at the Beijing Olympics. Although the sector was evolving at its own pace, these golden events led to its upsurge. India, which earlier worshipped only one sport, i.e. cricket, started to take strides in other sports as well. All of these opened doors for sports management to flourish in the Indian sporting landscape, which, in return, demands professionals to take charge of this sunrise industry.
The time had come for India to have a centre that trains sports enthusiasts to take up professions in the sports arena. With multiple sports now in the limelight, we need professionals who understand the requirements of the brand and sportspersons. Five categorised career paths in the sports industry are:

*Administration and operations;
*Media, communication and PR;
*Athlete, team, league management;
*Sales and marketing; and
*Sports analytics.

Of these, sports analytics is important for on and off the field activities. Proper statistics help teams, and sports teams employ analysts to enhance players’ performance, team management, marketing, decision-making, revenues, etc. It is, therefore, considered to be one of the most important sub-sectors in sports management. There is a need for more and more analysts.

According to FICCI Vision Document 2014, the sports industry would require human resources of 4 million by 2022. Sub-sectors like sports marketing and PR, sports events, sports grass-roots development, manufacturing and retail demand manpower such as consultants, managers, administrators, planners, lawyers, economists, psychologists, coaches, etc. And with the evolution of sporting leagues, this demand will only increase.

Sports and sportspersons depend on sports management and vice versa. With sportspersons and sports evolving, there is a demand for workforce who will create an environment for them to flourish even more. On the other hand, for sports management as a profession to come up, there is a need to have better sporting infrastructure so that sportspersons have the right resources. The entire landscape of the industry is inter-relational. Sports management would play a significant role in shaping this ecosystem.

The author, a former Indian cricketer, is the founder of the International Institute of Sports Management, Mumbai

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