Sahara pulls out May 22, 2013

Full text of BCCI's response to Pune Warriors' withdrawal

ESPNcricinfo staff

A day after Sahara withdrew the Pune Warriors franchise from the IPL, the BCCI responded with a media release clarifying their stand on the issue.

The BCCI has read in media reports that Sahara has purported to terminate its franchise agreement and to pull out of IPL, the 2014 season onwards. The BCCI has had no direct communication from its franchisee, Sahara Adventure Sports Limited, in this regard.

The BCCI can however confirm that, in order to satisfy the balance of the 2013 franchise fee of Rs. 120 crore, which was overdue and owing to BCCI since 3 April 2013, it has encashed part of the bank guarantee put in place by Sahara Adventure Sports Limited.

The IPL Governing Council met with representatives of the franchisee on 21 February 2013 and received assurances that the franchisee would settle all obligations as they fell due. Once the 3 April 2013 due date had passed, the Governing Council had two letters sent to Sahara Adventure Sports Limited - one on 12 April 2013 and the second on 24 April 2013 - requesting settlement of the overdue amount. No payment was made and no response was received to the second letter and so, in order to protect its interests, the BCCI was forced to encash the guarantee.

While it is true that the arbitration has not progressed, the BCCI cannot be held responsible since every one of the eminent retired judges suggested by the BCCI was not found acceptable by the franchisee. In order to break this impasse, a letter was sent to Sahara Adventure Sports Limited, proposing that as the claimant to the arbitration, it should approach the court to appoint an arbitrator so that the process could move forward. Again, no response was received to this suggestion.

The BCCI has at all times acted in accordance with its franchise agreement with Sahara Adventure Sports Limited, and is not able to enter into a private negotiation on the quantum of the franchise fee which was offered by Sahara Adventure Sports Limited in its response to the Invitation to Tender floated by the BCCI in March 2010.

Sanjay Jagdale
Hony. Secretary

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • RAJARAMAN on May 23, 2013, 8:08 GMT

    Pune wants to reduce franchisee fees because of fewer games. BCCI doesn't ... now only an arbitrator can rule on this why ... why is Sahara hesitating? May be they are not sure of the legal status ... anyway, they paid way too much for getting into IPL while smart Sun TV people got SRH for almost half the price of PWI and even made it to the playoffs ... Sahara calculations failed ... that is all ... not smart enough

  • virang on May 23, 2013, 1:33 GMT

    it doesn't matter whom u believe, as long as u enjoy the Ipl

  • Rupesh on May 22, 2013, 19:29 GMT

    Pune wants to reduce franchisee fees because of fewer games. BCCI doesn't. Pune withdrew because fees wouldn't be reduced and they couldn't continue to take large losses every year. Who sent which letter to whom and everything else is pointless chatter.

  • Dummy4 on May 22, 2013, 18:42 GMT

    At last BCCI did something well. Got a better draft of its statement than Sahara did. :P

  • Dummy4 on May 22, 2013, 18:36 GMT

    BCCI's media statement says nothing about how they identified the amount they claim is due to them as per the Bank Guarantee. If BCCI have sensibly pro-rated the franchisee fee down to a reduced amount that would fall due for the reduced # of matches, then encashing the guarantee makes sense. If BCCI have tried to collect entire dues for 94 matches, then BCCI has effectively proved Sahara's point to be right - can Cricinfo help us by getting a clarification from BCCI ?

  • Prasanna on May 22, 2013, 14:34 GMT

    Whose statement to believe? Sahara's or this?

  • Tahir on May 22, 2013, 13:34 GMT

    Sahara is a name that every kid in India is familiar with. They have truly been part of the game and should be awarded from the BCCI as being one of the most trusted and reliable sponsors for Cricket India. Sahara and BCCI both have a reputation. Sahara is a respectable and successful company in the Industrial community. BCCI, as successful as they might have gotten in the recent years have a reputation that is almost the complete opposite. Now when I read two statements majorly contradicting each other I am left with no doubt as to which party is telling the truth here. I will give BCCI the credit of coming out with the more professional and well written statement though. Sorry Sahara, I'm not sure who your PR company is but my 5 year old niece could have worded your statement better.

  • Dummy4 on May 22, 2013, 13:29 GMT

    Can BCCI give ONE reason as to why the $370 million should not be proportionally reduced for the reduction in the number of matches! I am NOT a Sahara fan; but is certainly a fan of logic AND justice!

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