Wellington, Feb.23 (ANI): New Zealand Cricket is hoping that having a star-studded Indian team on tour will be a money-spinner for the sport.
Poised to boost earnings through lucrative broadcasting rights for the five-week tour, New Zealand Cricket chief executive Justin Vaughan said the sheer volume and passion of Indian fans around the world made this tour three times more valuable than any other.
"This year should be the best year New Zealand Cricket has ever had," stuff.co.nz quoted Vaughan, as saying.
Last year, New Zealand Cricket earned 35 million dollars, of which television rights were the largest contributor, Vaughan said.
The Indian tour was by far the most valuable because of its sheer viewing potential, with India's population the second largest in the world and huge expatriate communities in Britain and the United States.
An estimated two-thirds of global revenue from world cricket stems from India alone.
However, the last Indian cricket tour of New Zealand in 2002 was not a great money spinner, Vaughan said.
New Zealand Trade and Enterprise and Tourism New Zealand are piggybacking the tour as well, inviting business leaders and journalists to visit New Zealand during the next five weeks.
Tourism NZ chief executive George Hickton said the Indian tour was a perfect platform to raise New Zealand's profile as a holiday destination.
NZTE had invited high-profile Indian business people, including Bangalore billionaire Vijay Mallya, owner of Kingfisher Airlines and United Breweries Group.
NZTE group general manager Jack Stephens said research showed that forging links through common ground such as cricket was a distinct opportunity to open up business relationships with India.
Vaughan said domestic tourism would not see a windfall from the tour because Indians were not traditional tour followers in the way England cricket fans were. (ANI)