Virat Kohli hikes endorsement fee to Rs 5 crore/day, highest among Indian celebrities.

Published on: 1/04/17 8:54 AM

Cricketer Virat Kohli has increased his endorsement fee to Rs 5 crore a day for new contracts, the highest charged by any celebrity in the country, possibly putting the 28-year-old in the league of international sports stars.

The Indian captain's fee earlier ranged between Rs 2.5 crore and Rs 4 crore a day. The increase comes as the renewal of his endorsement deal with cola maker PepsiCo is being negotiated.

The Endorsement fees surpasses not only what former captain MS Dhoni charged at his peak, but also that of Bollywood stars such as Shahrukh Khan, Ranveer Singh and Ranbir Kapoor.

Cornerstone Sport, the agency representing Kohli, declined to comment on the cricketer's fee while indicating optimism about the Pepsi contract. "Virat is contracted with Pepsi until April 30. We are currently negotiating a contract extension with the Pepsi-Co team," Cornerstone Sport CEO Bunty Sajdeh said in an email. PepsiCo ended its 11-year association with Dhoni, the then one-day and T20 cricket team captain, last summer. The company could pull all stops to retain its contract with the swashbuckling India captain, marketers and brand experts said.

Colas have been at the receiving end of health activists and urban consumers are shifting to low sugar beverages. "Today, a celebrity cannot just endorse a product for the sake of it," said Prathish Nair, head of brand consulting firm Trancend.

Last month, Kohli became the first Indian sportsperson to sign an eight-year, Rs 110-crore endorsement deal with German sportswear Puma. Kohli also endorses Audi cars, MRF tyres, Tissot watches, Gionee phones, Boost milk drink, Colgate toothpaste and Vicks lozenges, among others.

Kohli endorses 18 brands and has invested in a chain of gyms under the name Chisel, a tech startup called Sports Convo, a fashion label by the name of Wrogn and has a partnership with Nazara Technologies for online cricket games.

Virat Kohli Brand Ambassador List

Presently Virat is a Brand Ambassador of popular companies like Adidas, Boost drink, Toyota, BSF (Border Security Force), Celkon mobiles, Clear shampoo, Cinthol, Herbalife Products, Munch, Fastrack, Nike, Red Chief shoes, Sangam Clothing, TVS, Fair & Lovely, Pepsi Ad, Flying Machine ad.

An October 2016 report on the country's most valued celebrity brands by global valuation and corporate advisory firm Duff & Phelps estimated Kohli's brand value at $92 million. Now the valuation is up at least 30% with his current form and captaincy, a sports management associate said. Earlier this week, Kohli led India to victory in the home test series against Australia. 

Soccer icon Cristiano Ronaldo topped the list of world's highest earners in sports last year with earnings of $88 mn, according to Forbes annual survey. This included $32 mn from endorsements. The second-richest sports star was Lionel Messi with earnings of $81.4 mn, including $28 mn from sponsors. There are no cricketers in Forbes list, which mainly features stars from soccer, tennis, golf, basketball, baseball, auto racing and boxing.