Star India Outbids Sony to Win IPL Media Rights

The 21st Century Fox-owned company outbid present broadcaster Sony’s INR 11,058 to bag media rights from 2018 to 2022. Star made a single consolidated global media rights bid of INR 16,347.5 crore, which was higher than the sum of the highest bids in each category (INR 15,819.51 crore) (approximately Rs. 500 crore less than Star’s bid).

Out of 24 companies presented with the Invitation to Tender (ITT), only 13 made to the final cut. Among those companies were Star India, Sony Pictures Network (India), Reliance Jio, BeIN (Qatar), Facebook, Airtel, Econet, and others.

Expressing delight on obtaining exclusive rights for the next five years, Chairman and CEO of Star India, Uday Shankar said, “IPL is a very powerful property. It was a conscious call to bid for the global rights; we have a significant presence in all forms and markets. It made sense for us to make an attempt and win it for all the markets.”

BCCI CEO Rahul Johri stated, “The IPL media auction would rake in around INR 18,000 crore, which is closer to what it fetched in auction.”

For the past 10 years, Sony held the IPL media rights with a bid of INR 8,200 crore in 2008. The global digital rights was given to Novi Digital in 2015 for INR 302.2 crore.

Star India stated that the focus will be on the sport. The spotlight will be on enhancing the quality of cricket and creating value for cricket fans rather than glitz and glamor.

Commenting on the staggering investment, the Star Chief said, “If it (our figures) were slightly less, we would not have got the rights. We won by a really narrow margin of 2-3 percent; that should tell [us] this is the right figure.”

Technical bids before the opening of financial bids were studied by three major agencies, including Deloitte, SportsMechanics, and Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas.

Star India thinks the winning figure is right for them given the margin with which they won. Nevertheless, the figure definitely made BCCI wealthier.