IPL is back once again and so does its title sponsor, Vivo. Not alone, but with the captain of the Indian men’s cricket team, Virat Kohli on board. He is the third brand ambassador roped in by the Chinese smartphone maker for its promotional activities apart from having Bollywood actors, Aamir Khan and Sara Ali Khan already associated with Vivo.
As we all know that Vivo backed out of IPL 2020 fearing backlash from the viewers due to the tussle going on at the frontiers of Indo-China during the same period. Perhaps, they were right in doing so. Things have turned now it seems. Vivo is back again as the main sponsor of IPL 2021.
Getting Virat Kohli on board means getting approval from the BCCI, the apex body governing cricket in India. He is probably the biggest star in the sporting arena which Vivo could get and they have done it successfully. Though this is not the first instance Virat is associated with any smartphone brand. He has been a brand ambassador of Gionee and Xiaomi before.
This is what Virat Kohli said about his association with Vivo, “I am really looking forward to this association. As a sportsperson, I understand the importance of consistency and commitment in the game. Vivo, as a brand, has established itself as one of the leading players in the Indian smartphone market with its consistency towards delivering innovative technology. The way Vivo has brought joy to its customers’ lives through simplified technology and advancements in mobile photography is game-winning. Associating with such a brand that understands and delivers to the audience is quite exciting.”
The point here arises that the anti-China sentiment has subdued in the last five to six months if it was there anyhow. If you recall how trade bodies like CAIT have called for a boycott of Chinese brands last year and even asked celebrities to not endorse these brands. There were similar reports of Chinese boycotts throughout the country.
Phone makers of Chinese origin witnessed strong sales during the last many quarters despite the call for a boycott. The numbers during Diwali, last year, skyrocketed. Xiaomi claimed to have sold goods worth ₹500 crores during that phase. Last they claimed to have a business of ₹200 crores in India. Similarly, realme, Vivo, and Oppo made some deep inroads into the far interior parts of the country.
It’s not only Xiaomi that made profits but others did too. The only losers were the app makers. Going by sales figures, reported, it seems that Chinese phone makers have done well in Indian markets. Out of the top five smartphone players, four are Chinese. With Virat onboard Vivo would aim to have a multifold jump among the millennials. The association with IPL makes Vivo even invincible.
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