So, Sakshi Rawat brings in the lakshmi for Dhoni – a whopping 210 crores – and he overtakes Tendulkar by 30 crores in the list of record for the maximum value of endorsements in hard cash. Sachin’s landmark deal of 100 crores with WorldTel that shook things up in the world of advertising is now a distant memory.
But something’s clearly not adding up.
If reward is equal to effort, Dhoni has not even achieved a quarter of the cricketing milestones Tendulkar has surpassed. The tag of captaincy cannot be such a huge leverage factor.
Media outlets have irresponsibly and vaguely attributed unnamed advertising honchos and corporate world in general to peg it to the age factor in direct co-relation to why a young Randhir Kapoor replaced Shahrukh Khan to drink colas. But skill sets of a sportsman cannot be discounted for good looks.
When one looks at the top contract values of sportspersons, one finds Alex Rodrigues (34 yrs) ahead of Joe Mauer (27) in baseball and Kimi Raikkonen (31) overtaking Fernando Alonso (28) on the F1 track.
As it is, athletes getting these insane amounts of money for a few hours of games and fun is not something many – and not just Indians_ in the world are able to relate to. But how exactly do the economics of endorsements by Sporting icons work?
It all boils down to this. If a team owner had to offer a huge contract amount but had to choose between Tendulkar and Dhoni, what would be his thinking? A research paper on mostly American stars is a revelation to an extent in some direction and concludes thus:
The economics of the market for professional athletes are a conundrum that owners of professional sports franchises face every day. If an owner has to pick one of two players, he has questions to ponder. Which player has the superior talent? Which player is more likely to help the team win games? Which player is more likely to draw fans into the ballpark and sell jerseys?
From the advertisers’ point of view, I think, that the moot question will be, ‘Who will the audience most relate to?’
If your answers favour Dhoni, please guide others by voting for him in the poll below.
Tendulkar it is for me because I suspect the price here has been rigged because it is all in the friend circle here and the hype and comparisons with Tiger Woods are to influence the market towards heading in that direction of making Dhoni’s coterie rich. Remember his agents get 30% of the revenue they can generate.