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ISL 2020/21 Sponsors Watch: Chennaiyin FC

Many teams in the Indian Super League have been successful in terms of boosting the sponsorship portfolio before the start of the 2020/21 campaign. Some teams found new partners, while some clubs opted for extending pre-existing deals rather than finding new sponsors. Chennaiyin FC (CFC) falls in both categories as they secured good deals despite the financial uncertainty caused by the pandemic.

In terms of principal sponsors, there were no new names at CFC before the start of the new season. The club focussed on keeping good ties with Apollo Tyres and DafaNews. Both brands managed to negotiate a contract extension to retain the rights of principal sponsorship of the ISL club. It is a multi-year deal with Apollo Tyres, while the length of the contract with DafaNews remains unknown. Apollo Tyres feature in the front of the first team kit, while DafaNews gets exposure on the backside of the jersey.

In associate sponsors, Chennaiyin FC retained the sponsorship deal with Nippon Paints. The paints brand continues to feature on the sleeve of the first team kit. The South Indian club also continued their association with SSVM Institutions. The two organizations have been working together since the start of the last season. SSVM features on the collar of the first team kit.

CFC also had new associate sponsors this season as they negotiated deals with PayTm First Games and Acko General Insurance. Both brands feature on the first team kit, PayTm on the pocket, and Acko on the sleeve. The kit sponsor for the Chennai-based ISL team remained the same as Performax released the new kit for the club in November.

Along with keeping the same kit partner, Chennaiyin FC also renewed several deals with other official partners. The PVR Cinemas will continue to be the official multiplex partner, while Workafella is the official workspace partner of the club.

FitBit also continued to work with CFC as an official wellness partner. Fever 91.9 is working with CFC as the official Bollywood Radio partner, while 94.3 Radio One is the Tamil radio partner of the club. Nutra Supplements and GBR TMT are other official partners of the club.

Chennaiyin FC’s strategy of extending deals with existing sponsors will help them in the short term as brands have been hesitating to invest in sports in the current financial climate. The length of new deals will decide whether it will be a beneficial deal in the long term. Short-term deals willUnlike other ISL clubs, Chennaiyin FC has focussed on retaining large number of sponsors rather than sign new deals for the 2020/21 campaign. help them to be active in the market next year as the club of Chennaiyin FC’s stature will be in great demand when brands recover from losses due to the pandemic.

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