NBA enters into Mumbai’s Corporate Hub
Realty+talks to Siddharth Chury – Associate Vice President, Global Partnerships, NBA India exploring the inspiration behind their new BKC Office.
The NBA, after being in the country since 2011 now is the world’s largest basketball league. They recently set up an interactive office space in the heart of India’s Mumbai city, at the corporate hub of Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC). The new headquarters is a complete mix of work and play enhancing the brand’s ethos which is bold and high spirited.
What led you’ll to set up shop in BKC?
The NBA has grown rapidly in India over the past 7-8 years. Just last season we saw a live game TV viewership of over 80M viewers, grew our social fanbase in India to over 22M, and took our Jr. NBA grassroots development program to over 7,800 schools in 34 cities across India, directly imparting basketball training to over 6.5M kids.
As the NBA drives its rapid growth in India, so was the need for our team in India to grow & evolve to deliver & sustain this growth. And to house this growing diverse team, we needed a new bigger and more modern space. We lovingly call this our homecourt, the new home of the NBA in India.
When we set about working on the design for our new office, it was a collaboration between 3 teams – the design team from our architects M Moser, the facilities team from the NBA headquarters in New York City, and a 4 core member team from the NBA India office.
There were 3 key philosophies driving the design direction –
- Create an open, modern, interactive & engaging work environment that infuses energy in our team and makes work more fun.
- Bring slices of actual in-arena experiences into the office – giving visitors as close an experience of being in an actual NBA Arena, and impressing upon them all that the NBA has to offer.
- Create a multi-purpose space for us to use for NBA events, content shoots, screening parties, media interactions, etc
There are a number of interactive installations around the office that deliver this engaging experience.
The 2 vertical screens in the reception area showcase our technology focus at the NBA. While one screen cycles through recent NBA game results, upcoming game schedules, and team standings; the other screen spews out dashboards on NBA’s social media interactions, word clouds, and social feeds, all in real time.
The digital puzzle wall lets visitors play with NBA themed puzzles and quizzes and tests their knowledge about the NBA. The giant video wall runs live and recorded game footage and doubles up as the gaming zone when we’re in the mood for some NBA 2K action on the console.
Our PR wall showcases selected press coverage we’ve received around the NBA in India over the past year or so.
A couple of my personal favourites zone are the merchandise wall [where we display a wide variety of NBA merchandise available for fans to flaunt their fandom] and the history wall [which chronicles key moments in NBA history across 8 decades, including interactive screens allowing you to relive moments of your choice].
And even with all of these elements around, what I’ve seen visitors spend most of time with is the pop-a-shot machine. Whether you’re a good basketball player or not, everyone loves to shoot the ball into the hoop, and this station offers a fun interactive experience while doing so. In fact, we often encourage our visitors to take a try at beating the top score of the day!
We’ve also paid a lot of attention to detail; even something as seemingly trivial as the colour of the wooden flooring was carefully selected to match the actual floor of NBA courts; or for that matter the court markings on the office floor are exactly the dimensions as the actual NBA court, giving the sense of size & grandeur of the NBA arena. Even meeting rooms in the office are named & themed on milestones in an NBA season, that too chronologically. We start with the Tip Off, move on to All-Star, then Playoffs followed by Finals, and the main conference room is called the Champions.
The office still has a few elements yet to be installed. In the works is a memorabilia wall, with signed items from key NBA players & legends, or items from important moments from NBA’s history; in a way, we’re trying to create a mini-museum of sorts, which will be like the mecca for all hardcore NBA fans. Also, on the way is a ceiling suspend sculpture of an athlete flying thru the air to dunk the basketball; again expected to be a jaw-dropping photo op spot for all visitors.
So, as the NBA continues to grow in India, our office will continue to evolve and keep our team and visitors alike engaged & entertained.