The BCCI does not want to allow these partnerships to occur, despite the International Cricket Council’s recent sponsorship deals with exchanges like FTX.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India has banned Indian Premier League Teams from engaging in sponsorship deals with crypto exchanges. This will affect the lucrative advertising slots that Indian exchanges like CoinSwitch Kuber and CoinDCX use during the course of a tournament. Four franchises received interest from crypto exchanges to take on varying degrees of sponsorship roles for the next season of the cricket showpiece.
The BCCI are cautious due to the lack of regulatory oversight of the industry in the country and wait on the bill that will be discussed in the upcoming winter session of Parliament before approving any negotiations between franchises and exchange representatives.
If the ICC can do it, why can’t we?
The International Cricket Council, which is the sport’s global governing body, recently allowed CoinSwitch Kuber and CoinDCX to advertise during the Men’s ICC T20 World Cup in Dubai and Oman, raising questions from IPL franchises as to why they should be banned from engaging in such partnerships. The BCCI has banned broadcaster Star Sports group and Disney Star network from showing crypto and betting advertisements.
Crypto exchanges are looking to capitalize on Asia’s large cricket fan base
CoinDCX recently sponsored the T20 International Cricket Series between India and Sri Lanka in July 2021, marking the first time that a title sponsor of a cricket series was a crypto company.
Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX secured a sponsorship deal with the ICC to be visible for men’s and women’s tournaments, the men’s U19 Cricket World Cup, and the men’s world cup qualifiers. Bankman-Fried, chief executive and founder of FTX, expressed his sentiments surrounding cricket’s storied history merging with crypto’s unexplored territory and said that FTX is excited about the opportunity to build a solid relationship with the ICC in the ensuing years.
CoinDCX is an Indian crypto unicorn that raised $90M in a round of funding led by B Capital Group and included Coinbase Ventures, Polychain Capital, Block.one, and Jump Capital. The company was founded in 2018 by Sumit Gupta.
CoinSwitch Kuber is an Indian cryptocurrency exchange founded as a cryptocurrency aggregator in 2017 that secured $25M worth of backing from Tiger Global in a Series B funding round in April 2021. The Series A funding round raised $15M from Ribbit Capital and Paradigm.
At the time of writing, CoinDCX and CoinSwitch Kuber were each worth $1B, while another crypto exchange WazirX was worth $200M. The Indian Parliamentary Committee on Finance met with representatives approximately two weeks ago to debate the future of crypto in the country. At the meeting, representatives from CoinSwitch Kuber and WazirX claimed to have a user base of approximately $10M each.
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