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Tendulkar brings in Chiranjeevi and Nagarjuna as Kerala Blasters co-owners

MUMBAI: Former India cricket captain Sachin Tendulkar has sold a stake in Blasters Sports, which owns Indian Super League (ISL) football team Kerala Blasters, to a consortium comprising Telugu movie stars Akkineni Nagarjuna and Chiranjeevi, movie producer Allu Arvind and serial entrepreneur Nimmagadda Prasad.

The consortium will hold a majority stake in Blasters Sports. The value of the deal has not been disclosed.

Prior to this development, Tendulkar owned a 40 per cent stake in the Kerala franchise of the ISL while Prakash Potluri-led PVP Ventures was the majority stakeholder.

Tendulkar and PVP Ventures had bought the Kerala franchise in 2014. Subsequently, PVP Ventures transferred its shares to Tendulkar.

Commenting on the new development, Tendulkar, who still owns a substantial stake in the company, said: “We are beginning our third season in right earnest and have some of the biggest names coming on board as investors in Kerala Blasters. I welcome Chiranjeevi, Nagarjuna, Allu Arvind and Prasad to this exciting experience which is made more special with the faith and unique place that Kerala Blasters holds in the hearts of millions of followers”.

Tendulkar introduced the new co-owners to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan at the latter’s office at Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday morning. The former India cricket captain said he and the co-owners have agreed to the state government’s request to set up a residential football academy to groom young football stars.

This year, the franchise remained busy signing promising players like Thongkhosiem Haokip, Rino Anto, C K Vineeth and Mohammad Rafi. It has started negotiations with a renowned coach and is also interested in signing a technical director.