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SRK in talks to sell stake in KR?

After a series of forgettable outings despite big hype in the second edition of the Indian Premier League, is Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan selling his Knight Riders franchise?

According to speculation, SRK is in talks with Subroto Roy’s Sahara Group and the Anil Ambani Group for selling around 20% stake in the franchise. However, the biggest hurdle to any deal could be the high valuation of the team, industry sources said.

Shah Rukh’s company bought the Kolkata franchise last year for around Rs 300 crore and he would expect the brand to be valued at least around Rs 500 crore. Unfortunately, that expectation appears too high in the current economic climate.

Technically, SRK can sell equity up to 49% but he can’t sell the IPL franchise ownership to any party for the first three years. That Shah Rukh wants more partners in his franchise is not new.

At the moment, however, he’ll only get a bad price, also because his team has been among the worst performers this season, a source said.

When contacted by TOI, team officials denied SRK was trying to sell stake in the franchise. “There is no question of selling the franchise and Shah Rukh is not even thinking about it. He may not be South Africa, but he is still very passionate about his team and he doesnt need money by selling the team,” a Knight Riders official said.

Shah Rukh’s return to India from South Africa was being seen as a strong message to his team that that he would not return unless the Knight Riders performed well in upcoming matches. “If my team continues to lose like this, I am not going back to South Africa. I will go only when they play well and win,” SRK told a news channel.

Sahara and Reliance Communications spokespersons maintained they would be interested in buying a stake in the team if the Indian cricket board doesn’t increase the number of IPL teams from eight to 10. Sources said that IPL may have two more teams from the fourth season onwards from cities like Ahmedabad, Lucknow and Nagpur.

Earlier, Khan had approached some of these sponsors after HDIL dropped out of sponsoring the team’s jersey.

Source: Times of India

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