The Best Bat Sponsors in IPL History – An Analysis of Iconic Cricket Brand Associations

The Indian Premier League (IPL) is the most popular T20 cricket league in the world. With millions of viewers tuning in for every match, the IPL offers tremendous brand visibility for companies sponsoring the bats of star players. Selecting the right bat sponsorships is crucial for maximizing brand awareness and connecting with cricket fans. Here is an analysis of the best IPL bat sponsor companies over the years:

SG

SG has been a pioneering force in cricket bat manufacturing for over 85 years. Their bats balance modern design with traditional quality, optimizing power while retaining control. As a bat sponsor, SG provides visibility across all formats of cricket.

SG cricket bat IPLCinema

Some of SG’s most high-profile IPL endorsements include Virat Kohli (RCB), Rohit Sharma (MI), and Shikhar Dhawan (DC). Their bold branding and key player partnerships make SG a top bat sponsor choice. The traditional appeal of the SG brand also resonates with cricket purists.

MRF

As India’s largest tire manufacturer, MRF understands the importance of grip, control and power. They translate this expertise into high-performing cricket bats as well. MRF has sponsored batting legends like Sachin Tendulkar, Brian Lara and Steve Waugh.

MRF sponsored bat IPLCinema

In the IPL, MRF currently sponsors the bats of Ajinkya Rahane (CSK), Ravichandran Ashwin (RR), and Ambati Rayudu (CSK). The clean and prominent MRF logo placement provides maximum visibility. MRF’s tires and cricket bats portray a shared identity of resilience and balance. This consistency makes MRF a recognizable IPL bat sponsor.

CEAT

CEAT is another prominent Indian tire company doubling up as a cricket bat sponsor. They signed on young batting superstar Shubman Gill in 2021 for a 3-year deal. CEAT is banking on Gill’s rising stardom to showcase their brand to the next generation of cricket fans.

CEAT Bat IPLCinema

Previously, CEAT sponsored Gautam Gambhir from 2011-2018. Under CEAT’s backing, Gambhir excelled as KKR’s captain and top batsman. CEAT’s youthful image gels well with the dynamics of T20 cricket and the IPL. Their bold colors and stylish aesthetics make them a fashionable bat sponsor choice.

New Balance

Known for their world-class sports shoes, New Balance entered the cricket gear market in 2019. They signed on as the principal sponsor for the England and Wales Cricket Board. New Balance also partnered with three top IPL rising stars – Prithvi Shaw (DC), Shubman Gill (KKR), and Devdutt Padikkal (RCB).

New Balance cricket bats IPLCinema

The American brand brings contemporary sports design to cricket bats. New Balance provides its athletes with technologically advanced bats like the tuned aluminum DC580. With youth and innovation on their side, New Balance makes for an intriguing new IPL bat sponsor.

OPPO

As a rising mobile brand, OPPO joined forces with the BCCI as the Indian cricket team’s official sponsor in 2017. They also sponsor the bats of KL Rahul (LSG), and Nicholas Pooran (SRH) in the IPL.

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OPPO bats feature excellent balance thanks to the optimized sweet spot. The clean aesthetics highlight the OPPO branding on the back. With a focus on youth demographics, OPPO’s cricket sponsorships aide brand awareness. Their association with power hitters like Rahul and Pooran complements their tech innovation image.

Hero MotoCorp

Hero MotoCorp adopted an innovative strategy by sponsoring the bats of multiple players across teams. Some current Hero-sponsored batsmen are – David Warner (DC), Mohammed Siraj (RCB), and Mohammed Shami (GT).

This provides Hero exposure across more matches as compared to sponsoring just one player or team. Hero MotoCorp also gains visibility across the batting order through openers like Warner to lower-order bowlers like Shami. The two-wheelers and cricket bats both highlight Hero’s mass appeal in India.

Gionee

Gionee is a Chinese smartphone company aiming to dominate the budget mobile segment in India. They signed world-class batsman Virat Kohli as their brand ambassador in 2017.

Although Kohli bats with SG, Gionee gained publicity through its association with India’s biggest cricketing superstar. Gionee is also the principal sponsor for the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) team. Though not a bat sponsor, Gionee’s cricket associations have increased its youth brand awareness.

Cosco

The sports gear company Cosco has a long history of sponsoring bats in Indian cricket. Cosco was an early sponsor for batting maestro Sunil Gavaskar in the 1980s. They also backed cricketers like Krishnamachari Srikkanth and Navjot Singh Sidhu.

In the IPL, Cosco currently sponsors the bat of senior Mumbai Indians player Kieron Pollard. The sturdy Cosco bats suit Pollard’s power-hitting style well. With Pollard being an MI legend, Cosco gains visibility among their huge fan base. Cosco’s long-standing cricket associations make it a trusted name in the Indian bat market.

SS Ton

Based out of Meerut, SS Ton manufactures high-quality cricket gear. They are sponsors for domestic stalwarts such as Rajat Patidar and Abhimanyu Easwaran.

In the IPL, SS Ton backs young guns like Priyam Garg (SRH), Abdul Samad (SRH), and Rahul Tripathi (SRH). By associating with the next generation of hitters, SS Ton establishes itself as a future-ready bat brand. Its locally manufactured bats also have patriotic appeal among Indian fans.

CA Innovations

The bats manufacturing company CA Innovations forayed into cricket sponsorships in 2019. They signed explosive West Indian opener Chris Gayle as their brand ambassador across formats. Gayle’s attacking batting style provides the perfect promotion for their high-quality bats.

In the IPL, CA Innovations sponsor rising Indian star Ruturaj Gaikwad (CSK). The elegant right-hander emerged as the leading run-scorer in IPL 2021. With batsmen like Gayle and Gaikwad on their roster, CA Innovations garners attention among T20 cricket fans. The niche bat maker uses these partnerships to gain trust in an otherwise saturated market.

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BDM

The Indian bat manufacturing company BDM has a strong regional presence in domestic cricket. BDM sponsors domestic batting talents such as Devdutt Padikkal (Karnataka), Sarfaraaz Khan (Mumbai) and Yashasvi Jaiswal (Mumbai).

BDM Bat IPL Cinema

In IPL 2022, BDM partners with Rajasthan Royals (RR) as the team’s official bat sponsor. This provides national-level visibility for the growing brand. Their bats are used by RR stars like Sanju Samson, Jos Buttler, and Yashasvi Jaiswal. BDM’s alignment with the rising Royals team makes them a bat sponsor to watch.

Laver and Wood

Laver and Wood offer a premium bat owning experience through high quality craftsmanship. With over 25 years of bat making expertise, their bats provide elite performance.

Laver and Wood entered the IPL with sponsorship partnerships in 2019. They crafted bespoke bats for premier batsmen such as Virat Kohli (RCB) and Rohit Sharma (MI). The bats are tailored to the player’s technique for optimized shot-making. With personalized service for elite cricketers, Laver and Wood introduced a new level of prestige to bat sponsorships. Their niche positioning makes them the choice for discerning batsmen.

Gunn & Moore

The British sports goods company Gunn & Moore has over 225 years of sports equipment expertise. They leverage their heritage in cricket bat manufacturing through key IPL endorsements. Gunn & Moore is the official bat sponsor for Kolkata Knight Riders.

The company equips KKR stars like captain Shreyas Iyer, Nitish Rana, and Venkatesh Iyer. G&M’s craftsmanship helps maximize power and control required for IPL stroke play. The brand gains appeal by aligning with the popular Kolkata team. Their long-standing reputation in cricket circles provides credibility as well.

Sareen Sports

With origins dating back to 1930, Sareen Sports is among the oldest Indian cricket goods manufacturers. As a bat brand, they emphasize balance and comfort while retaining traditional aesthetics. Sareen is the official partner for the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) franchise.

Through this association, Sareen equips modern greats like Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers. Sponsoring generations of elite cricketers has made Sareen bats a prestige symbol. Their vintage appeal also attracts cricket purists and collectors. Blending innovation with tradition, Sareen Sports remains a noteworthy IPL bat sponsor.

In Conclusion

The IPL’s vast viewer base and star power makes it the perfect platform for bat sponsors. Brands like SG, CEAT, and MRF leverage their partnerships with cricketers to connect with fans. Meanwhile, companies like New Balance and CA Innovations use it to increase market share. For stalwarts like Sareen and G&M, bat sponsorships continue their rich cricket heritage.

Effective associations depend on aligning with the right cricketing stars and teams. This provides visibility among the desired demographics and maximizes brand recall. With bats being the most iconic cricket equipment, IPL bat sponsorships offer great marketing value. Companies offering quality craftsmanship and compelling narratives stand to gain the most through these partnerships.

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