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Thursday, February 12, 2015

It is no longer India Cements; Chennai Super Kings Ltd - Corproate

The Premier League contested by 20 clubs  is an English professional league for men's association football clubs. At the top of the English football league system, it is the country's primary football competition.  Recent reports suggest that the  English Premier League (EPL) will gross over $8 billion from its latest domestic rights deal, with pay-TV broadcaster Sky retaining the largest proportion of live televised matches.  The deal for the three seasons from 2016 covers 168 live matches per season, with Sky to show 126 games, including Friday night matches for the first time.  The glitzy EPL marketed as 'The Greatest Show on Earth' is broadcast to more than 600 million people across 200 plus countries — to TVs on stranded islands to the most swanky condos overlooking the Potomac in America. It helps sell millions of club shirts— from the £60 ones in club stores to the Rs.200 ones in Colaba. It is, probably, a symbol of pride for football in England.

Of the participating teams, Chelsea Football Club is  a professional football club based in Fulham, London.  Founded in 1905, the club have spent most of their history in the top tier of English football.  Since July 2003, Chelsea have been owned by Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich.  Another most followed Club - Manchester United Football Club is based in Old Trafford. The club went public in 1990 and was the subject of takeover bids from property trader Michael Knighton and Rupert Murdoch's BSkyB corporation before Malcolm Glazer's stake was announced in September 2003.  Another famous club, Arsenal is based in Holloway, London.   One of the most successful clubs in English football, they have won 13 First Division and Premier League titles and a joint record 11 FA Cups.  Arsenal's parent company, Arsenal Holdings plc, operates as a non-quoted public limited company, whose ownership is considerably different from that of other football clubs. Only 62,217 shares in Arsenal have been issued,  and they are not traded on a public exchange such as the FTSE or AIM; instead, they are traded relatively infrequently on the ICAP Securities and Derivatives Exchange, a specialist market.  In Nov 2014, a single share in Arsenal had a mid priceof £1,450,000, which set the club's market capitalisation value at approximately £902.2m.

There often is the question — how English is the English Premier League? – as majority of the teams are owned by companies or individuals who are not English.  To set the Indian context,  Indian Premier League [IPL] is modelled on IPL.  Though the same cannot be asked about ownership, one can ask – how Chennai is Chennai Super Kings [CSK] – ie., how many Tamilnadu players represent CSK ?

No intro is necessary on the yellow brigade – CSK, the franchise, founded in 2008 and captained by mercurial Mahendra Singh Dhoni.  The Super Kings are the most successful team in the IPL  and have won the title twice in succession (2010 and2011).  In 2010, they became the first Indian team to win the Champions League Twenty20 and repeated the feat in 2014. The leading run-scorer of the team is Suresh Raina, while the leading wicket-taker is Ravichandran Ashwin. The brand value of the Super Kings in 2012 was estimated at US$75.13 million, making them the most valuable franchise in the IPL. It all dates back to Sept 2007, when BCCI announced formation of IPL.  In Jan 2008, BCCI unveiled the owners of eight city-based franchises. The Chennai franchise was sold to the India Cements for $91 million, making it the fourth most expensive team in the league behind Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad.  India Cements acquired the rights to the franchise for 10 years. N. Srinivasan, vice-chairman and managing director of India Cements Ltd., is the de facto owner of the Chennai Super Kings, by means of his position within the company.

Today’s The Hindu reports that for the first time in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL), a cricket franchise will be owned by the shareholders of a company. The Board of India Cements Ltd. (ICL) has cleared the decks for transfer of IPL franchise rights of Chennai Super Kings to its wholly owned subsidiary, Chennai Super Kings Cricket Ltd. While doing so, the Board approved a reorganisation plan for the newly formed subsidiary.

This is seen as a deft move ahead of the crucial March 2 AGM of BCCI. Under the revamp plan, the 97,054 shareholders of India Cements will be given shares of Chennai Super Kings Cricket Ltd. free in proportion to the shares they currently hold in the company. The promoters together hold a 28.23 per cent stake in the company. “This is the first step to slowly getting India Cements into a pure-play cement company,” N. Srinivasan, vice-chairman and managing director of the company, said at a select press meeting immediately after the Board meeting here on Wednesday. “The ownership of Chennai Super Kings Cricket Ltd. will go to shareholders.” The move will help shareholders of India Cements exercise their choice — to own only the cement business or the cricket franchise or both. “This will also be first instance of a sporting franchise in India held by public shareholders,” Mr. Srinivasan said.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
12th Feb 2015.


Tailpiece : Shares of India Cements registered sharp gains on bourses accompanied by huge volumes after the company announced the decision of Board of Directors transferring the IPL franchise rights to its wholly-owned subsidiary Chennai Super Kings on Wednesday.  On  NSE the shares were quoting higher by 16.3 per cent at Rs. 110.70 in the morning deals with a volume of 69 lakh shares. 

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