Capri Global, the India-based financial services firm, has purchased a franchise in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) T20 League, the country’s short-form cricket competition that is due to debut this year.
The acquisition is Capri’s first in cricket and makes it the fourth owner of a UAE T20 franchise, along with Manchester United owner Lancer Capital, Mumbai Indians owner Reliance Strategic Business Ventures, and Delhi Capitals co-owners GMR Group.
The league will initially be contested by six franchises playing a total of 34 matches, and it will reportedly run across June and July.
In December, it was reported that Zee Entertainment, the Indian media group, had agreed a 10-year deal worth in the region of $100-120 million for the global broadcasting rights to the UAE T20 League.
Rajesh Sharma, managing director of Capri Global, said: “Our foray into sports franchising allows Capri Global to leverage on the passion that Indian audience has for cricket. We see great synergy coming through this alliance, including a host of exciting moments that are set to elevate the cricketing experience for our Indian audience at the global platform.
“We believe that the land of opportunity through its sports IP has created an image that accurately depicts what represents the UAE.”
Khalid Al Zarooni, chairman of the UAE T20 League and vice chairman of its owner the Emirates Cricket Board, added: “To have a partner who is acknowledged as one of India’s leading investment bankers buying into the UAE’s T20 vision and investing into sports properties with a long term investment perspective is a testament to the strength of the UAE T20 League’s business model and its value proposition to its stakeholders and an ode to the UAE as the destination of choice for global sports events.”