Image Inc to spruce up ICC image in India

NEW DELHI: The International Cricket Council (ICC) has finally realised that it cannot do everything on its own, especially in India, and that it needs an outside agency to do some PR for it as also undertake some image sprucing activity.



In this regard, the ICC has recently contracted the Delhi-based Image Inc, an outfit specialising in brand and image building activities that was started by journalist-turned-wannabe-politician Dilip Cherian as an off-shoot of the PR firm Perfect Relations.

While the ICC will be meeting today in London to decide whether India would play in the cricket World Cup or not, with the players having signed conditional terms and agreements, an official sponsor of the ICC, LG India, has moved the Supreme Court appealing against a recent interim Delhi High Court order. The Supreme Court has fixed 31 January as the next date of hearing.

In the wake of such developments, Image Inc. has kept a very low profile on the ICC account. Still, PR industry sources indicate that if Image Inc. manages to do some effective fire fighting , on behalf of the ICC, in the media, the account may come to it on a long-term basis.

In India, ICC certainly needs to spruce up its image. What with the general public opinion solidly behind the BCCI's stand on the Indian cricketers' playing terms vis-?-vis sponsorships and image rights, the apex body of cricket, regarded as the villain in the whole controversy that threatens to split the cricketing world vertically, can do with some 'good press' here.

What's more, a recent interim order by the Delhi High Court, on a public interest litigation filed by some former cricketers and cricket managers, also says that no foreign exchange should be allowed by the government to go out of the country if the ICC asks the BCCI to pay compensation. The court had also observed that if the cricket row is not resolved and India doesn't play in the World Cup, then official sponsors' ads would not be allowed to be telecast and they would also not be allowed to get the sponsorship money out of the country.

What would be Image Inc.'s role in India? Get across more effectively the ICC's point of view to the Indian public through the media, of course.

Can it do it? Well, the last ball has not been bowled yet, so keep chewing your nails till the final decision.

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