The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has set a jaw-dropping price for the media rights of the Indian Premier League (IPL) regarding the next five-year period from 2023 to 2027. Notably, the previous five-year cycle of IPL broadcasting rights that BCCI had signed with Star Sports ends in 2022.
According to a report in Cricbuzz, the Indian apex board has set a combined base price of INR 33,000 crore (INR 32,890 crore to be precise) – USD 4.35 Billion (approx.) for the media rights of the cash-rich league.
Further, this time around, there is no option of a composite bid through which, coincidentally, Star Sports had bagged the rights of the current 2018-22 cycle. This time an invitation that will be given out by the BCCI for IPL, which has now become a 10-team event from the ongoing fifteenth season onwards, shall have four different bundles.
The first bundle is for the television rights in the subcontinent of India, where the base price to telecast each IPL match is INR 49 crore. This will total up to INR 18130 crore for a five-year time period. Similarly, the second bundle is for digital rights, with a base price of INR 33 crore for every game. This will total up to INR 12210 crore for five years.
When it comes to Bundle C, it will have a package of 18 matches of the IPL. These 18 fixtures will consist of the opening and closing matches, the playoffs, as well as all the second matches (night matches) whenever a doubleheader takes place. This will total up to INR 1440 crore at the cost of INR 16 crore per fixture. Notably, this bundle will be available for the OTT players in the market and will be sold to a single player.
Now for Bundle D, which is for the rights outside the Indian subcontinent, it comes with a fee of INR 3 crore per game. With 74 matches for a period of five years, this will amount to a price of INR 1110 crore. Further, this will include the digital as well as the television rights of the cash-rich league.
“The non-exclusive package is an intriguing one. This concept came from countries where there was apprehension of competition regulator’s intervention, which currently is not the case in India. The fine print on this one will need to be read carefully,” said Harish Thawani, the former CEO of Nimbus.
“The Digital package is a leap of faith for entities with deep pockets. At about 66 per cent of TV rights value, the base price value may worry some. Especially with geo-blocking, not being as effective as before, with VPNs abounding, which may lead to subscriber price arbitrage. Ad revenues on digital also are unlikely to be 66 per cent of TV,” he added.