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Nandini Crosses Karnataka Boundary, to Sponsor Ireland & Scotland Cricket Teams for T20 World Cup – News18

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Under the brand Nandini, KMF products like sweets, milk, butter, ghee and chocolates are popular not only in Karnataka but across India. (Image: PTI/File)

The top brass of the Karnataka Milk Federation set out to rectify a general complaint that Karnataka’s popular dairy brand had not effectively advertised itself despite its global appeal

You will now find Karnataka’s dairy brand Nandini adorning the jerseys of the Scotland and Ireland teams in the upcoming T20 cricket world cup. The top brass of the Karnataka Milk Federation set out to rectify a general complaint that the popular brand had not effectively advertised itself despite its global appeal.

“Having sponsored the pro kabbadi team, we thought since cricket is the biggest sport that is watched and enjoyed across the world, we must target that as well. We called in tenders and found a comfortable partnership with the T20 teams of Ireland and Scotland,” Karnataka Milk Federation (KMF) managing director MK Jagadish told News18.

Nandini is an associate sponsor of the Bengaluru Bulls team in the Pro Kabaddi League. Though efforts were made to sponsor IPL team Royal Challengers Bengaluru, the idea did not materialise as it turned out to be expensive, Jagadish said.

Under the brand Nandini, KMF products like sweets, milk, butter, ghee, chocolates among others are popular not only in Karnataka but across the country; and with rising exports to countries like the Middle East, Singapore, Bhutan, Myanmar and the US, officials said.

The Nandini logo will be featured prominently on the lead arm (on the right arm for the left-handed batsmen and on the left for the right-handed) of the batsmen’s jerseys. The T20 Cricket World Cup 2024 will be co-hosted by the West Indies and the US between June 1 and 29.

“When one sees Nandini’s logo on the jerseys, every Kannadiga’s heart will swell with pride. It is also a celebration of our farmers who have been toiling hard to bring this essential product from farm to table. This will put Karnataka and Nandini on the world map,” Jagadish added.

Nandini had also found itself in a milk-turf war with Gujarat’s Amul, Kerala’s Milma and Tamil Nadu’s Aavin over milk outlets encroaching on each other’s regions as competition. This step of sponsoring the cricket teams has sparked a controversy after Aarin Capital Partners chairperson and former Infosys CFO TV Mohandas Pai questioned the KMF’s move, triggering an online war of words.

Pai, who is known to be vocal about his support for the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, said: “What a big shame! Why are they using the money belonging to the farmers of Karnataka, paid by consumers who are Kannadigas, to sponsor foreign teams? What value will it deliver? Pay poor farmers better. @siddaramaiah @DKShivakumar this is a waste for a largely Karnataka-based co/op!” Pai wrote in a post on X.

The Congress was quick to react and questioned how it hurt the farmers when actually it gave them global exposure and added benefits. Former Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Gowda, now North Bengaluru’s Lok Sabha candidate for the Congress, countered Pai by saying he is “proud to see NammaKMF, which the BJP was bent on weakening, being strengthened by the Congress government”.

Nandini, however, has decided to take the milk fight to the cricket pitch along with its competitor Amul, which had sponsored the Netherlands T20 team in 2011, and later associated with the Afghanistan, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and South Africa cricket teams.

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