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BCCI media rights auction today; Disney Star, Sony and Viacom18 in fray

BCCI expects at least Rs 600 million per game at auction, which translates into a base price of Rs 52.8 billion via the e-auction process

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is all set to conduct an e-auction today, for the media rights of international and domestic matches for the upcoming five-year cycle.

A few weeks ago, the BCCI rolled out an Invitation to Tender (ITT) seeking proposals from certain organisations.

The ITT was made available after payment of a non-refundable fee of Rs 15,00,000 plus applicable GST. This ITT encompassed detailed guidelines concerning the tender process, including criteria for eligibility, the procedure for bid submission, as well as rights and obligations.

The technical proposals for the BCCI media rights have been submitted by only three companies namely, Disney Star, Sony Sports Network and Viacom18, according to media reports.

Other entities including FanCode, Google and Amazon are not believed to have participated, the reports stated.

According to Elara Capital's report, the BCCI expects at least Rs 600 million per game at auction, which translates into a base price of Rs 52.8 billion via the e-auction process. It may cancel the process if the numbers are not breached. During CY18-23, the BCCI earned Rs 61.3 billion from Star India for 103 matches, with a price per international game at Rs 600 million (TV and digital). The base price for this cycle’s media rights is 25% lower per match than CY18-23. IPL auctions, on the other hand, during CY23-27 had a base price that was 47% per match higher than the earlier cycle.

"We expect the BCCI to garner 1.6-1.9x of base price (32% higher than earlier cycle rights on a like-to-like basis, as the number of matches has come off by 15% vs the earlier cycle), as the current base at Rs 450 million per match is already 25% lower than the last cycle’s price of Rs 600 million," the report stated.

“We expect the premium to be higher than the base price for digital for these media rights too (just like IPL), as TV rights premium may be in the range of 30-40% over base price whereas digital rights premium could be in the range of 80-90%, which translates into a per match price of Rs 0.8 billion (TV and digital). We believe this pricing is justified as it will give platforms an opportunity to break even or turn profitable. India’s ad environment may turn conducive in CY24, led by profitable new age and commerce firms, inflationary pressures cooling off and emergence of Meta, Web 3.0 and 5G. With only three players (Sony, Disney Star and Viacom18) bidding for the bilateral rights by BCCI, premiums for this property could be much lower as against IPL,” the report said.

In the upcoming 2023-2027 media rights cycle, the BCCI established a higher base price for digital rights compared with TV. BCCI also lowered the overall base price to Rs 45 crore per match compared to Rs 61 crore per match that Disney Star paid in the recently concluded cycle. The upcoming cycle includes a total of 88 games.

According to the tender issued by the BCCI, Package A, encompassing the TV rights for the Indian subcontinent, has been assigned a base price of Rs 20 crore per match.

Package B comes with global digital rights and television rights for the rest of the world, priced at a base rate of Rs 25 crore per match.


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