Reliance Industries Limited, through its subsidiary Reliance Strategic Business Ventures Limited (RSBVL), will acquire the rights to own and operate a new franchise cricket team in the Emirates. Cricket Board’s upcoming UAE T20 league. The move is the first major overseas expansion of Reliance Industries’ cricket operations in a global franchise-based cricket league.
The cricket business will now include two cricket clubs in addition to their other cricket related initiatives including sponsorship, consultancy, broadcast and talent management.
RIL is one of the eight founding members through Mumbai Indians IPL And over the years has grown into one of the most successful cricket club on and off the field. The deal will allow UAE’s T20 league to benefit from the company’s commercial and cricketing knowledge, promising a new and exciting brand of cricket with great learning, experience and entertainment for the emirate.
Mumbai Indians co-owner and architect Nita Ambani said, “With great pride and joy, we take our Mumbai Indians brand of fearless cricket to a new geography. We are grateful to our fans, both in India And abroad, to support Mi wholeheartedly. I look forward to strengthening and growing our global fan base and long-term association with them through this new league.”
“While Mumbai Indians will continue to be at the center of our cricket operations, the popularity of global T20 leagues and the attractiveness of the UAE market provide us with a unique opportunity to further unlock the value of our sports management expertise. It gives us a platform to develop young international talent and share best practices on and off the field,” she said.
MI owner Akash Ambani believes that the UAE T20 League presents a unique opportunity to build on the existing global partnership and benefit the growth of cricket in the UAE.
“We at Mumbai Indians are extremely proud to have created a global franchise, integrated with high values and ethos and our contribution to the Indian cricket ecosystem. We are equally confident to bring our experiences to shape another successful brand in the UAE and benefit the growth of cricket in the UAE,” said Akash.
Khalid Al Zarooni, Chairman of the UAE T20 League and Vice Chairman of the ECB, believes that RIL’s investment in the UAE T20 League demonstrates the corporate industry’s belief in the UAE’s vision and ability to deliver world-class cricket events.
“Our goal is to transform cricket in the UAE through the UAE T20 League. Our comprehensive plan includes the expansion of cricket through various development programs being organized in the UAE by league franchises, including talent hunts, coaching and training by some of the best in the business,” says Mr. Zarooni.
“RIL has a legacy with a proven track record in setting up the most successful teams in franchise cricket. The association of a vanguard like RIL with the league demonstrates the belief in our system and the strength of our infrastructure to deliver world-class events. We are delighted to welcome RIL onboard and look forward to an exciting and continuing alliance,” he said.
ECB Secretary General Mubashir Usmani said: “The trust shown by the major business houses in the UAE T20 League is extremely encouraging. We are delighted with RIL’s association with the league as a franchise team owner. Mumbai Indians in the IPL. Having seen the professionalism in operations, their success in putting together the most successful team in franchise cricket and the passion with which they pursue their goals, we are confident that this collaboration will be mutually beneficial for both RIL . and will support the development of the league and cricket in the UAE.”
The UAE T20 League, sanctioned by the Emirates Cricket Board, will be held annually. For the initial few years, six franchise teams would compete in 34 matches in the league. The league will feature some of the biggest names in world cricket and will provide a platform and experience to up-and-coming young cricketers.
RIL’s inclusion in the UAE T20 League is the first in a series of other important announcements regarding the league to be held in the coming days.