- Disney Star pays US$3.02bn for domestic TV rights
- Viacom18 parts with US$3.05bn for digital deal covering Indian subcontinent and other key overseas markets
- New contracts mean IPL is only behind NFL in per-match value
Disney Star has retained domestic TV broadcast rights to the Twenty20 franchise cricket tournament for I₹23,575 crore (US$3.02 billion).
However, Disney Star’s stranglehold over IPL, which saw it pay I₹16,447 crore (US$2.55 billion at the time) for an all-encompassing global deal for 2018 to 2022, was ended by Viacom18. The media company landed both of the IPL’s digital rights packages for the Indian subcontinent, as well as TV and digital rights across Australia and New Zealand, the UK, and South Africa, for a combined ₹23,758 crore (US$3.05 billion).
In April, Viacom18 announced a multi-billion dollar deal which will see James Murdoch’s Bodhi Tree, Indian conglomerate Reliance, Paramount Global and TV18 split its ownership. This is pending regulatory approval, but will see Viacom18’s spending power increase substantially, as well as giving it two streaming products in India as Paramount+ joins Voot in the market next year.
The IPL’s TV and digital rights for the Middle East and the USA were picked up by Times Internet, which paid a reported ₹205 crore (US$26.3 million) and ₹258 crore (US$33.1 million) respectively.
Disney Star’s package will see it pay the equivalent of ₹57.5 crore (US$7.4 million) per match, while Viacom18’s digital deal for the Indian subcontinent will see it part with ₹50 (US$6.4 million) each game. ESPNcricinfo notes that, factoring in the global rights, the IPL is now only behind the National Football League (NFL) in per-match value.
As well as the BCCI, which runs the IPL, the bumper broadcast deals will provide a hefty cash boost for the league’s franchises, whose share of central revenue is set to increase to almost ₹500 crore (US$64.1 million) apiece.
The biggest growth driver for the IPL’s new rights cycle has been the increase in value of the tournament’s digital packages. The I₹23,491 crore (US$3.01 billion) fee is a 42 per cent increase on what Disney Star paid for all the rights during the 2018 to 2022 cycle. Facebook was the top bidder for the individual digital package in 2017, with a reported offer of I₹3,900 crore (US$610 million at the time).