In a world dominated by the advertising industry, brand creations become the key. And for advertisers, there cannot be anyone better for endorsing the product than Indian cricket captain, Virat Kohli himself. Considering Shah Rukh Khan’s popularity, one expects him to be pinned at the top and he is ruling up there by a fair distance—his estimated brand value is a whopping $131 mn. Whoa! The popularity of Bollywood and the major fan-following of the NRIs make SRK easily the most sought-after brand. These are the figures of 2016, published by Duff & Phelps. This means he may soon surpass the king and the badshaah of Bollywood Shah Rukh Khan.

“The track record of a sports player has a direct bearing on his attractiveness as a brand endorser. Given the consistent and unbeatable record of Virat Kohli, companies that want to position themselves as a market winner will definitely look to sign him on as a brand ambassador,” said Aviral Jain, director at Duff & Phelps.

It is estimated that Virat Kohli’s brand value spiked from 20 to 25 per cent after he became the full-time Test skipper and of course, his dream form has helped the cause. The feats he recently achieved helped him escalate past Don’s world record of four consecutive double tons in successive series.

At present, the Indian run machine endorses more than 20 big brands, like Gionee, American Tourister.

“Like in the case of any product or service brand, a brand ambassador’s value goes up with better performance. Better performance means greater number of eyeballs, greater awareness and increase in acreage in print (coverage),” added Kiran Khalap, co-founder, Chlorophyll Brand and Communications Consultancy.

“We are not far from the day when Kohli could easily be the most expensive brand ambassador in the history of endorsements in India, and justifiably so,” said Anirban Das Blah, founder and chief executive of CAA Kwan.