20 Jan

Former IMG and England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) executive Mike Fordham (pictured) has been appointed chief executive of Indian Premier League cricket team Rajasthan Royals. 

Fordham has more than 16 years of experience working with leading sports organisations and was a key part of the IMG team that developed the Indian Premier League with the Board of Control for Cricket in India, the country’s governing body. 

Fordham spent over 10 years with IMG, leaving his role as vice-president in 2015 to join the ECB, where he began as head of commercial partnerships, before leading the development of the professional franchise 100-ball cricket tournament, the Hundred. He stayed at the ECB for almost four years, before becoming director of consulting at TRM Partners, the UK-based sponsorship sales and data agency, and his latest role before joining the Rajasthan Royals. 

At IMG Fordham worked across projects within the company’s strategic initiatives division and helped to establish IMG Reliance, the joint venture company formed by IMG and India’s largest private company Reliance Industries. Reliance recently acquired IMG’s 50-per-cent stake in their joint venture and plans to rebrand the unit. 

The Rajasthan Royals Group also announced that its lead investor, Emerging Media IPL Limited, has increased its shareholding to over 50 per cent in the IPL franchise. With this move EMIPL, which is owned and controlled by Manoj Badale, becomes the majority shareholder of The Rajasthan Royals. 

According to The Hindu Business Line, EMPIL raised funds from a number of investors to acquire the shares, including Ian McKinnon, one of the founding partners of sports and entertainment company TEAM8 and Betfair founder Ed Wray. 

“Investors are now recognising the value of sports franchises. EMIPL’s increased ownership of the franchise and expanded network of US-based, value-add investors presents an exciting opportunity to drive the growth of both the Rajasthan Royals and the IPL,” Badale said. 

John Stephenson 


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