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Disney, Mumbai Indians in licensing pact

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MUMBAI: Mukesh Ambani-owned IPL franchise Mumbai Indians has inked a licensing deal with The Walt Disney Company India to launch co-branded merchandise products targeted at under-14 kids segment.

The co-branded merchandise will be sold in around 5,000 Reliance retail outlets and will be also be promoted through the digital medium.

The two partners see a brand fit. Mumbai Indians have India’s favourite cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar at its helm who has huge following among kids particularly under-14. Mickey Mouse, Disney’s famous cartoon property, is also a popular character among kids..

With this association, the merchandise revenue of Mumbai Indians is expected to climb in comparison to last year’s revenue of Rs 50-60 million, according to Mumbai Indians co-owner Nita Ambani.

Ambani further said that her vision for Mumbai Indians was to make it a strong and satisfactory brand that is financially independent without the support of RIL. She also said that the franchise will break even in the long run.

Walt Disney India MD Ronnie Screwvala is delighted with this alliance. "Disney being the most acclaimed brand internationally has only bonded with brands that are commercially feasible in its nature,” he said.

He also feels that this coalition of Mumbai Indians and Walt Disney will expedite the aggrandizing of brand equity for both .

The former entrepreneur cum CEO of UTV also mentioned that the under 14 segment has high potential and will keep burgeoning in the next few years. He pegs the licensing market for kids in 4-14 age group at Rs 14 billion.

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