“IPL has come to the rightful home of the cricket in India,” said Uday Shankar, CEO of Star India as the channel clinched the television (India and Rest of the World) and digital broadcast rights for Vivo IPL for Rs 16347.50 crore. The final fight for the rights turned to be, as expected, between Star India and Sony Pictures Networks. Star India didn’t leave any stone unturned and made the single highest bid for the broadcast rights. It bid Rs 6196.94 crore for India television broadcast rights and Rs 1443 crore for India digital rights.
“I would like to thank BCCI for trusting us with IPL. We believe that it is a very powerful property and that lot more values can be created for the fans of cricket and viewers on IPL through digital and TV,” added Shankar, who promises to create a ‘complete experience.’ There was the fear of losing if the amount was ‘slightly less’, he expressed. He added that every category was competitive.
“We were committed to delivering the most transparent process for bidding for IPL,” said Rahul Johri, CEO, BCCI.
Meanwhile, Sony Pictures Networks (SPN)’s bid was higher in the India broadcast category at Rs 11,050 crore. It didn’t bid for any other right except for Rs 84.50 crore for one category of ROW (Rest of the World) while its competitor Star India bid for all other rights.
A spokesperson from Sony Pictures Networks said, “Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN) has nurtured IPL since its inception and within a span of 10 years established it as one of the most popular sporting properties in the world. We would like to thank all those who supported us in curating the lineage and legacy of IPL. At the same time, we take this opportunity of wishing STAR India the best as they shape IPL over the next five years.”
Fourteen out of 24 companies had participated in the auction: beIN Sports, SuperSport, YuppTV, Times Internet, Gulf DTH, Facebook, Airtel, Star India, BAM Tech, Sony Pictures Network, Econet Media Group, Perform Group, Followon Interactive Media and Reliance Jio.
Amazon, Taj TV, Gulf DTH, Group M, Media India, Sky Uk Ltd, ESPN Digital Media, BTG Legal Services, BTPLC, Twitter and Discovery didn’t submit the bids.
After the technical evaluation Star India and SPN were qualified to bid for the TV broadcast rights while Airtel, Reliance Jio, Facebook, Times Internet and Star India qualified for digital rights. For Rest of the World, Yupp TV, Followon, Perform Group, Supersport and beIN Sports qualified. BAM Tech was disqualified because a lot of fundamental documents were missing from their bid.
IPL’s journey started early in 2008 when Sony acquired its rights for 10 years for $918 million. Then again in 2009 the company re-acquired rights for $1.63 billion for 10 years after renegotiation. In February 2015, Star India had got the internet and mobile rights for three years for Rs 302.2 crore.
According to Duff & Phelps, a global valuation and corporate finance advisory, IPL in its tenth year is worth Rs 34,000 crore ($5.3 billion) and has posted a 26 per cent increase in its overall business from Rs 27,000 crore ($4.2 billion) last year. The league has seen a three-year CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 13.9 per cent.