MS DhoniImage: Himanshu Bhatt / Nurphoto Via Getty Images
A good brand is made up of tangible and intangible elements and Mahendra Singh Dhoni has a judicious mix of both. That explains why brand Dhoni will continue to thrive despite his retirement. The former India captain endorses over 30 brands.
His fitness, technique, agility, understanding of the pitch and cricketing rules, and penchant for hitting sixes were among the best in the world, says Jagdeep Kapoor, managing director at Samsika Marketing Consultants. His calm behaviour, leadership skills, risk-taking ability and ability to uplift and motivate a team are priceless assets for a brand. “Such a great blend makes him a perennial brand property,” he adds.
For Orient Electric, part of the CK Birla group firm, Dhoni is a man for all reasons and seasons.
“He was always more than a cricketer,” says Rakesh Khanna, managing director and chief executive officer of Orient Electric, which has Dhoni as its brand ambassador since 2006. “Not many have his risk-taking ability, unconventional demeanour and unblemished track record,” says Khanna. His values, he lets on, gel perfectly with what Orient stands for. “It is a perfect match.”
Orient Electric is not alone to stick with Dhoni. Indigo Paints will also continue with the player. “His brand will not take a hit for at least the next four to five years,” says Hemant Jalan, managing director of Indigo Paints. “In fact, he is the equivalent of Amitabh Bachchan. Dhoni is much more than cricket,” says Jalan, adding that now people will connect with him for what he is as a person. His small town roots, endearing personality and composed disposition make him a hot cake for brands, he adds.