20 Oct 2017
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Ranbir Kapoor’s ISL Mumbai team eyes break-even in 3 years

MUMBAI: Looking to ride on the popularity of its co-owner Ranbir Kapoor, the Mumbai franchise of the Indian Super League (ISL) is expecting to break-even in three years’ time, said a source in the franchise.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the source said that the franchise was open to diluting equity two to three years down the line once the league and the franchise has been established. The franchise would preferably like to dilute stake to a foreign football club rather than a financial investor.

Ranbir-Kapoor“We expect the franchise to break-even in three years. We would also consider diluting equity in the franchise once the league gets established. But this year the focus is to put in place a good team and play well,” the source said.

The source also said that 65 per cent of the franchise’s revenue will come from sponsorship while the rest will come from gate receipts. The franchise has signed up Book My Show as the ticketing partner. The 55,000-capacity DY Patil Stadium will serve as the official venue of the club.

Kapoor had won the franchise with a bid of Rs 15–16 crore (Rs 150–160 million) per year.

Besides Kapoor, the franchise has another co-owner in Bimal Parekh, who also serves as the Bollywood star’s Chartered Accountant. Kapoor and Parekh own 50 per cent equity in the franchise.

Christened Mumbai City Football Club (Mumbai City FC), the franchise has players such as Subrata Pal, Ishan Debnath, Manuel Friedrich, Peter Costa, Syed Rahim Nabi, Asif Kottayil, Lalrin Fela, Rohit Mirza, Abhishek Yadav, Sushil Kumar Singh, Singam Subash Singh and Nadong Bhutia.

Mumbai City FC boasts top international talent such as Germany’s Manuel Friedrich who is a quality centre back and the first German footballer to play professionally in India. He is the only team member in the ISL to have played in the last season of the 2013/14 UEFA Champions League.

Mumbai City FCArunava Chaudhuri is the COO of the franchise while Nishant Mehra is the technical director. CAA Kwan has got the mandate to manage the franchise including sponsorship and marketing.

Meanwhile, unveiling the Mumbai City FC logo, Ranbir shared details about the thought behind the striking blue and white design, which will be a symbol associated with every effort of the team and embody the eternal spirit of the vibrant, pulsating city. The team’s colours will be a combination of blue with red and white.

“A resilient fortress stands proudly surrounding the logo that signifies the unrelenting, determined spirit of the city. The seven stars, bold and regal, symbolise the islands that form Mumbai. Trains that are the very lifeline of the city, pulsing, beating a staccato rhythm as they ply millions of Mumbaikars across its vast expanse, every single day tirelessly, connect these islands. Each passenger, each citizen of the city bound together by their love for the place they call home,” Ranbir said. “20 million citizens, 20 million hearts that pulse to a single beat—the heartbeat of Mumbai,” he added.

Ranbir Kapoor with Mumbai City FC Team Players at the Launch of ISL's Mumbai-City Football Club

Ranbir Kapoor with Mumbai City FC Team Players at the Launch of ISL’s Mumbai-City Football Club

Elaborating on the philosophy of the team, Parekh said, “Our team will play a possession-based free-flowing brand of football, while being technically sound, fast and tactically aware.”

Talking about the squad, football director Nishant Mehra said, “Mumbai City FC is composed of an exciting line-up of players that boast varied international experience blended with rich domestic talent from across the country. We are looking forward to building a strong team by bringing together the best talent available.”