Reality show Big Brother of UK catapulted Shilpa Shetty from her sagging career. There is no looking back for her since then. She released a Yoga DVD and became the host of Indian Big Brother reality show. This show pushed the new channels of Colors to the big league but then I digress.
After that show was completed Shilpa went into exile – almost. She is back in the news again. Not for her beauty but for her brains. She has turned entrepreneurial and bought a stake in Indian Premier League team of Rajasthan Royals.
Rajasthan Royals got greedy for a while as I have blogged earlier and dumped their sponsors Bajaj Allianz. Rajasthan Royals wanted to raise capital through the IPO route but decided against it. Not because of the credit crunch but because it would be ridiculous for a cricket team which only plays once in a year to give any strategic returns to the investors. It decided to sell stake to Shilpa instead.
Shilpa Shetty would be the third Bollywood celebrity after Shah Rukh and Preity Zinta to own a cricket team. Shah Rukh owns Kolkata Knight Riders, which did not do very well in the previous edition but rumored to be profitable from its merchandise sale. Preity Zinta along with Ness Wadia owns Kings XI Punjab, which did pretty well but ended up on the losing side. The celebrity list is not complete without the mention of Vijay Mallya who owns Bangalore Royal Challengers team which sucked through out the tournament.
Rajasthan Royals or Jaipur franchise costed the owners $67 million. Now, with the 12% stake sale the team is valued at $140 million. Some of the venture capitalists will be closely following this space. I wonder what would be done with all that money. Buy new bats and pads? I hope they they don’t spend all that money on yoga classes.(source)