Sports Management

Sports Management in India is an emerging field, and a lot of professionals are associating themselves with it. Earlier, sports personalities were not seen as ‘stars’, but in today’s times, players like MS Dhoni and Yuvraj Singh, make fortunes off the field. In such a scenario, where sports is not merely about scoring runs, or winning tournaments, sports management has become increasingly important.

The need for sports management is also seen as the Sports management bodies of the Government are often seen to be restricted by the chains of bureaucracy, and are not able to understand the need of the hour. Hence, for progress in the field of sports, an element of professionalism is needed. Private sports management firms are the key.

World over, sports management firms are in control of players who have signed contracts under them. Once the contract is signed, they take over, and ensure that the player is taken care of. This may include the brands they choose to endorse, the commercials they appear in, almost creating a marketable commodity.

Earlier, the mixing of sports with management elements was frowned upon, and it was felt that sports should be kept aside from business. However, over the years, it has been increasingly seen that it is a wise decision to combine the two, as both can only benefit from each other.

Late Mark Mcormack was the pioneer in this field, worldwide. He started International Management Group (IMG) with only one client, and today, they represent the who’s who of sports, fashion, films, and corporates. They own brands such as the Nick Bolletteirri Tennis Academy amongst others. In the light of India’s emerging economy, IMG has now set up base here, and was the organizer of the IPL, the Chennai Open, the Wills Fashion Week, and various other events.

Smaller players in India include Globosports, headed by former tennis champion Mahesh Bhupathi, who handle Sania Mirza, and Collage Sports Management, who handle Virender Sehwag.

These stars are role models for the young India, and represent the dreams and aspirations of many. With the help of a professional manager behind them it becomes easier for them to make a mark at the international level. Films like Jerry McGuire, starring Tom Cruise as a sports agent highlight the importance of the same in the professional life of any sports person.

Seeing the success of the IPL, and the increasing importance corporates are giving to sports, this field has a bright future in India. With a starting salary of 30k per month, it is a wise career option, especially for those who are fond of sports, and wish to be associated with it in such a manner.

India is one of the world’s fastest growing economies, and hence, sports management is one of the fields in which a lot of activity is expected to be seen in the future.

Devika Menon

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