The rights had been segregated in two categories – broadcast and digital (internet and mobile) rights. Each one of them will now be valued at over Rs 1,000 crore and any interested buyer will have to pay that much more to acquire an IPL team or even a majority stake.
The BCCI is expected to open the media rights bid for India Cricket after the Committee of Administrators (COA) present the reworked draft of the BCCI constitution to the Supreme Court, according to a top BCCI official. Till now the Technical evaluation competed, Star India and Sony Pictures are eligible for the bidding process. A reason why Star India won the digital rights.
“You have to understand digital market is growing very rapidly”.
BCCI CEO Rahul Johri, on his part, said: “Our main endeavour to the stakeholders was to provide a transparent process where there should not be any iota of doubt”. In the morning, of the 24 companies that had bought the ITT (Invitation to Tender) document for various rights, only 14 turned up for the auction. “Companies want to invest in scaling up their offerings”, said Varun Gupta, Duff & Phelps Managing Director.
This contract will now empower Star India to hold complete media rights for this mega event, starting from 2018 to 2022.
He said that IPL’s viewership both in digital and linear was growing even in rural areas. The future of sports is going to be through digital media. The value of that deal is approximately $600m for a total of 96 matches – around $6.7m per fixture. Sony made a bid of Rs 11, 050 crore for the India television rights, while Facebook’s Rs 3900 crore for the India digital rights was the highest bid in that category. “Here in the USA there are very few new rights available for the most popular sports until about 2021”. You should also notice one thing that, regardless of whatever happens, India is one country where, when cricket happens on the ground, it is still an incredible experience for the people and that is corroborated by the number of people watching it on TV and the number of people who throng the stadiums. Our view was that we would be able to create a complete experience for fans.
Several TV channels have been trying to bag the IPL media rights, as it is one of the most lucrative business. I think it can become a lot more exciting depending on how the data prices behave and how the availability and access to broadband and wifi continues to grow in this country.
Shankar said Star sees its bid more as a five-year investment than a one-time deal that has to be immediately profitable. This year already saw digital media companies such as Facebook jumping into the fray and it won’t be too long before Netflix and Amazon Prime vying for the same space.