India is the sporting destination: Nita Ambani
Ambani, also founder chairperson of Reliance Foundation, told the audience how sports changed her life, perspective and worldview.
Ambani, also founder chairperson of Reliance Foundation, told the audience how sports changed her life, perspective and worldview. “Right now is probably the most exciting time for sports in India, whether you are a player, a coach, an investor, an administrator or a fan, there has never been an environment more conducive, more encouraging, more enabling for sports than what we have in India today. India is truly emerging as the newest and youngest sporting power in the world and what makes it even more engaging and exciting is the strength of our numbers.”
She added that sport has given rise to many businesses and professions — coaches, physios, tech entrepreneurs, media and merchandising. “What India offers you uniquely is a combined power of democracy, diversity, demography and development,” she told the gathering.
Ambani also lauded Prime Minister Narendra Modi, not only for promoting yoga globally, but also for launching two major initiatives to promote sports – the ‘Khelo India’ programme and ‘Fit India’ movement. “Helping these initiatives is the digital revolution that is changing the landscape of India,” said Ambani.
She also pointed at the scale and size of viewership for sporting properties, stating that in 2018 alone, the total TV viewership of sports in the country crossed 800 million.
Speaking about her motivation to launch the Indian Super League (ISL) for football in 2014, Ambani said, “As a teacher and a mother, I knew children in our school would wake up in the middle of the night to watch the Premier League. That is when I realised that the younger generation had a huge interest in football. I saw that there was a big opportunity in India for this beautiful game.”