MLB to enter the Indian market with new local headquarters. This is a summary of the most exciting news in multicultural sports marketing. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop-shop.
- MLB is planning to enter the Indian market by opening its first office in New Delhi. The league is looking to attract the country’s avid cricket fanbase to take up baseball. “The country has huge potential for us, and we want to make sure that India is an important part of the ever-growing brand that is MLB,” said Jim Small, MLB’s senior vice president of international. The Indian headquarters represent MLB’s sixth international office. Other locations are Mexico, Japan, China, and London.
- MLB is planning to play more games in Europe beyond its two-year commitment to London. This year, the New York Yankees beat the Boston Red Sox in MLB’s first two regular-season games in Europe held at the London Stadium. The Chicago Cubs and St Louis Cardinals are already scheduled to play at the same venue next year. MLB commissioner Rob Manfred stated he is interested in having matches in other cities, including London.
- MLB ventured into esports with a tournament in China. Eight top Chinese esports teams will compete in the US organization’s official title, MLB: The Show. The three-month competition, which was announced on MLB’s Weibo account, will take place across the Chinese cities of Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Hangzhou, Shanghai, and Xi’an. The new league is slated to launch later this year.
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- Minor League Baseball presented its Top 25 teams in licensed merchandise sales for 2018. Together, the 160 teams reached totals of more than $73.8 million in retail sales. This marks a 4.2% percent increase over 2017’s record total. The Top 25 list includes Albuquerque Isotopes, Durham Bulls, El Paso Chihuahuas, Fort Wayne TinCaps, Gwinnett Stripers, Hartford Yard Goats, Indianapolis Indians, Nashville Sounds, Portland Sea Dogs, Richmond Flying Squirrels, Salt Lake Bees, Tacoma Rainiers, and Trenton Thunder.
- beIN SPORTS signed a long-term National TV measurement agreement with Nielsen. The new deal allows both beIN SPORTS and beIN SPORTS en Español to continue receiving market intelligence and persons-level viewing data for both networks. “Consumers today, especially sports viewers are looking not just for a diverse slate of content, but also a variety of viewing options. With our network growth in non-traditional platform viewership and our viewers recently ranking among the top in terms of length of tune and engagement scales, it’s critical for us to make sure that our world-class programming is reaching the right audience through advanced audience measurement tools,” said Antonio Briceño, Deputy Managing Director of beIN SPORTS USA and Canada.