Looking at the success of Emirates Travel Agents Cricket Tournament, held recently in Mumbai, the Dubai-based airline plans to hold matches in Delhi and Chennai as well, and may look at engaging trade in other Indian cities too.
The Dubai-based airline has historically been quite prodigious in its sponsorships, cherry-picking from an array of sporting, arts, and cultural events. This strategy directly supports the carrier’s corporate objectives, primarily to be ‘a global lifestyle brand’. Towards this end, Emirates allocates a slice of its marketing and advertising budget for such sponsorships, sponsoring many sports teams and other events.
One such event, albeit on a smaller scale, is the Emirates Travel Agents Cricket Tournament that it organises in India. It recently concluded the 5th edition of this tournament in Mumbai. And now the industry eagerly awaits the next edition of the cricket tournament for agents and frontline staff over the past few years. This year saw a total of 18 teams and over 400 registered players/ agents. The prizes included eight trophies, Man of the Match award for Semi Finals and Final, Best Batsman, Best Bowler, and Player of the Tournament.
Explaining the idea behind this, Sunil Kallyat, Regional Manager, WI at Emirates, says, “Cricket is a religion in India and we see a lot of enthusiasm from the travel trade to be part of this. The idea behind organising this tournament is to bring together the travel agency frontline staff. We wanted to do something special for them and after years of planning and ideating, we came up with this event and they love it! They are our core business associates and they have been contributing a lot towards our success.”
Expanding to 5 cities soon
Kallyat adds that it is difficult to accommodate everyone but the team does its best every year. The first year saw 32 teams, which was reduced to 24 teams, and eventually 18. There was a request from 1,200 players in the beginning, but due to logistical reason, Emirates brought it down to 400 quality players this year.
Looking at the success of this year’s tournament, Emirates saw a desire to ensure participation in this tournament from other cities as well. “We, therefore, decided to hold matches in Delhi and Chennai as well. In future, we may look at replicating this in Hyderabad and Bengaluru too to engage the travel trade in these two cities. We are trying to accommodate everyone since the registrations are quite high. We had over 32 teams and 600+ players registering this year for the tournament in Mumbai alone. We have big plans going forward – that is the way Emirates looks at it, be part of big sporting events,” Kallyat adds.
Emirates Travel Agents Cricket Tournament
- This year (2023), the Emirates Travel Agents Cricket Tournament saw participation of 18 teams and over 400 registered players/ agents.
- The prizes at the cricket tournament included eight trophies, Man of the Match award for Semi Finals and Final, Best Batsman, Best Bowler, and Player of the Tournament.