In race to pip ICC, BCCI comes up with IPL media-rights tender

Wednesday 06th October 2021 07:11 EDT

In a race to be a step ahead of the International Cricket Council (ICC), the BCCI came out with a hurried statement that it will bring out the media rights tender for the 2023-27 cycle of the Indian Premier League (IPL) soon after the auctioning of two new franchises next month.

The submission of bids for the two new franchises - the tender for which was brought out earlier this month - is scheduled for October 25. “The IPL media rights tender for the cycle 2023-27 will be released immediately after the appointment of two new IPL teams,” the BCCI statement read.

The ICC has planned a board meeting on November 16 in which the game’s global governing body is in discussions to float a media rights tender for its next eight-year cycle. Top BCCI sources said that the Board has asked president Sourav Ganguly to speak against the said motion and insist that the ICC should delay the said process.

“The BCCI clearly wants to wrap-up its sale of the next IPL rights cycle before the ICC brings out its own ITT (Invitation To Tender). Honestly, it doesn’t make a difference because the industry understands that IPL is and will remain the elephant in the room,” sources tracking developments said.

Between the submission of bids for the franchise and the ICC board meeting, “there’s a gap of only three-and-half-weeks”. By bringing out this timely statement, the BCCI clearly wants to announce to the industry in a hurry that it will go to the market before anyone else, especially the ICC.

The IPL media rights will once again be for a period of five years. The BCCI evaluated the decision to reduce the rights cycle from five years to three, but eventually decided against it. The process of sale, as mandated by the Supreme Court in 2017, will be an e-auction.

In 2017, when the BCCI last sold its media rights for five years, Star India – now part of the global Disney set-up – had spent a massive £1.63 billion (at US$2.3b in exchange value at that time) in a consolidated bid to grab the space. Sony Pictures was the only other big-ticket spender for television rights alone at Ts 1.15 billion while social-media giant Facebook made a huge, but unsuccessful, digital rights bid of £390 million.

Meanwhile, it was announced that the last two league games of the IPL will be staged simultaneously.

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