It is a well-known fact that some cricket players are more well-liked than movie stars these days, and major corporations are now working with athletes to promote their products. Many major brands use athletes like MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Hardik Pandya, etc. as their spokespersons.
The same was not the case in the 1990s, and Sachin Tendulkar was responsible for starting the transformation when he signed a significant contract with Mark Mascarenhas’ sports management company WorldTel in 1995. Tendulkar received a lot of criticism for signing the contract.
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Tendulkar agreed to a five-year contract in 1995 for INR 45 crore, and when it came time to renew it in 2000, he requested INR 100 crore. The sum was far too large at the time, and it allowed athletes to become the faces of major corporate endorsements.
Sachin Tendulkar’s INR 45 Crore Deal with World Tel Changed the Face of Advertising in Sports
Tendulkar discussed this incident during his appearance on the program Breakfast with Champions. He claimed that he was the first to sign such a contract, and others who objected to it claimed that he was only out for personal gain. However, Tendulkar said that his focus was solely on the game and that he was not even considering the money.
According to Tendulkar, the contract only served to offer up more opportunities for him, therefore he never chased money after it. This partnership undoubtedly transformed the sports marketing sector.
Sachin Tendulkar recalled, “That concept just wasn’t there yet. It was 1995, and I’d like to think that I was the first one to sign a contract like that in India.
“There were many viewpoints, and some claimed that I was now only pursuing financial gain. What justifies entering into a contract?
“And I had the exact opposite way of thinking. Simply put, I shouldn’t have to worry about that money. I only wanted to pay attention to my game.
Despite retiring from international competition in 2013, Tendulkar continues to be quite active and has collaborated with companies like Pepsi, Adidas, MRF, and others. However, industry insiders claim that Tendulkar’s fee has decreased significantly.