Uniglobe Sameera Travel, an associate of Vancouver (Canada)-based Uniglobe Travel, the world’s largest single-brand travel franchise company with an annual system-wide sales volume of $5 billion, is gearing up to foray into cricket tourism this year.
Floated by former Mumbai and Hyderabad Ranji player Vijay Mohan Raj, who is also a qualified cricket coach for National Cricket Academy, the training wing of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), the city-based travel agency has already launched www.cricketconsultants.com to promote its proposed initiative.
“The objective is to connect every cricket connoisseur and professional directly or indirectly with the game,” managing director Vijay Mohan Raj told Business Standard.
Stating that there are about 110 cricket-playing countries and not all of them are test match-playing nations, he said his company wanted to undertake cricket team exchange programmes and organise tournaments in those countries.
“We are currently in talks with all the International Cricket Council (ICC) member countries to take this initiative forward. We expect our programmes to help some of ICC’s associate and affiliate members to gain experience and achieve test match-playing country status,” he added.
The ICC does not control bilateral fixtures between member countries, including test matches, neither does it govern domestic cricket in member countries.
Uniglobe Sameera, which claims to be the only travel agent out of the 2,400 agents in the country to promote cricket tourism, has served over 2.5 million travellers in the last two-and-a-half-decades.
“It is too early to speculate on future revenues from our cricket tourism programme,” Raj said, adding that the company was targeting to achieve a turnover of Rs 100 crore in the next three years, from the current Rs 40 crore, triggered by its proposed entry into temple, medical, meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE), leisure and adventure tourism in a phased manner.