19 May

The Lancashire County Cricket Club (LCCC) is planning big for India. Lancashire is considered as one of the big financial success stories of the English county system and now they want to grow their brand in the world’s biggest cricket market. Daniel Gidney, the CEO for the country told Reuters that they will be soon unveiling their India plans.

“We have a big growth plan for India,” said Gidney, referencing the success of the India v Pakistan World Cup game at Old Trafford last summer which had a TV audience of 233 million. “We want to make Lancashire Cricket the second favourite team for all Indian fans. It is about raising our profile in India and obviously broadcast is a way to do that and we want to launch Lancashire TV and get as much Lancashire cricket content as we can broadcast in the sub-continent. That is very much part of our growth strategy,” he said.

Another way forward for the club would be to sign leading Indian players for the county, although the IPL Twenty20 league currently prevents Indian players from playing in T20 competitions abroad, players can still play in first-class cricket in England.

Lancashire held a training tour in Mumbai in February during which Gidney met with Indian business executives along with former India and Lancashire player Farokh Engineer. The tour followed a number of initiatives aimed at welcoming Indian fans to future internationals in Manchester. British fans of Indian heritage are also a part of Gidney’s strategy along with fans of the India team, who travelled in huge numbers for last year’s Pakistan match.

“To start with it is about encouraging people to travel more to watch India play in England, touch wood India are playing at Emirates Old Trafford in both 2021 and 2022. That is a platform.The passion for the game in India is enormous and unrivalled.”

The recently published financial accounts to the 31 December 2019, Lancashire have had a record year with revenues of £34 Million (more than some of international cricket boards) and made a net profit of £5million.

Despite spending last season in the second division the revenues reflect LCCC’s strategy of using the Emirates Old Trafford home ground for other sources of revenue. With a hotel and conference facilities on-site, operating profits have grown tenfold for the club in the past five years. But with no cricket to be played until July at the earliest, Lancashire, like other counties, will expect a financial hit from the impact of the virus.

“Clearly, these are now tough times as the club navigates its way through the current COVID-19 pandemic, but these results at least help relief that financial burden,” CEO Daniel Gidney told Reuters.

“We are fortunate because of the risks and decisions we took which gave us a sustainable business and will enable us to continue with our ambitions going forward,” he added.

Gidney said the club was continuing with plans for further development of Old Trafford and was also targeting the state school system in a bid to reintroduce the game to youngsters.

“We want to get cricket into a thousand state schools over the next 10 years, across the whole of the North West, that is something that is really important and very close to our hearts,” he said.

John Stephenson




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