Teams represent different regions and cities in the tournament, organized by the Board of Control for Cricket in India. Every season kicks off with auctions among its various team franchises, bidding across the board, for domestic and international players.
With eight teams competing to be champions, players in the league were amongst the highest paid in the world. The winners are offered 500 million Indian rupees, with second place team receiving 125 million rupees. According to its rules, half that prize money is to be distributed amongst the players. Awards for the most valuable player, the batsmen with the most runs scored – an orange cap, and the bowler with the most wickets – a purple cap are also handed out every season.
Mumbai Indians, the team owned by Reliance Industries won the 2019 season of the IPL, with India Cements-owned Chennai Super Kings finishing second. The man of the tournament that season was Kolkata Knight Rider player Andre Russell, with the orange and purple caps presented to David Warner (Sunrisers Hyderabad) and Imran Tahir (Chennai Super Kings), respectively.
The IPL does not come without its fair share of controversy - a two-season suspension was slapped on Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals for match fixing and betting in 2015 resulted in the formation of the Rising Pune Supergiant and Gujarat Lions.
Despite being enveloped in scandal, the IPL is arguably the most successful cricket league in the world, and a brand worth being associated with. Sponsorship drives one of the largest parts of its income. DLF started the league as title sponsors for the first five years at two billion rupees, followed by Pepsi. Following the match-fixing scandal in 2013, Chinese phone maker Vivo replaced the beverage giant to clinch title sponsorship since 2016. In 2020, Vivo’s contract was suspended due to Indo-China tensions, opening up bidding for title sponsor yet again. In August that year, Dream 11, an Indian fantasy sports platform acquired the title at 2.22 billion rupees.
Viewership for the league plays a huge role in the success in advertising and driving consumer sales. This is in addition to the frenzy of supporting favorites and rooting for specific players can only be compared to Superbowl in the United States. From broadcaster Disney+ Hotstar, to a variety of FMCG brands plan to launch campaigns to boost demand in an attempt to counter the effects of the pandemic lockdown. What is more, the 13th season coincides with the festive season in India – something companies want to leverage.