In an industry obsessed with bracketing women, Sunny Leone will not be pigeon-holed. Her film career aside, the actor is fast proving to be a sharp businesswoman. Ahead of Premier Futsal season 2, Leone has been announced as the co-owner and brand ambassador of Kochi-based football team, Kerala Cobras. This comes close on the heels of her launching her own line of perfumes and the production house, SunCity.
Co-owning a football team is of sentimental value to her. "Having grown up in Canada and later in the US, football was our neighbourhood sport. It's my first love. I was always an athletic kid and was naturally drawn to it," she smiles.
But it wasn't just sentiment at work while closing the deal. "Being part of something bigger than yourself is always a great way to take [your own] brand ahead. After evaluating the league and the team, we felt it would be a great fit."
True to being an artiste, Leone understands that her creative streak dominates her personality. However, she is quick to point out that it doesn't necessarily mean that artistes don't have the acumen to spearhead a business successfully. "I evaluate and analyse every business decision. At the end of the day, it's my name in the spotlight. You can't get to this level without some business sense. Sports is just the beginning for us. There's a lot more in pipeline this year."
For now though, her latest acquisition has all her attention. "We'll get sponsors on board and rope in great players. Keep it simple the first year and get the team off the ground."