IPL 2018 title sponsor continue to be VIVO    VIVO
IPL 2018 title sponsor continue to be VIVO VIVO

Unless you have been living under a rock (and a rather heavy one, too), you would have known by now that Star India have bagged the global media rights for IPL from 2018 to 2022. Obviously this has not come for free: they have to dish out INR 16,347.5 crores (that is 12 digits; thank me for saving you some counting). That amounts to a whopping USD 2.55 billion, higher than the GDPs of several countries. That also amounts to USD 510 million a year. To put things into perspective, BBL fetches USD 20 million a year, which means that IPL earns 25 times more revenue than BBL.

This also means that Sony TV will not be telecasting IPL from next season. Novi Digital, who had acquired the digital rights for three seasons (from 2015 to 2017) will also cease to be the official telecasters. This will obviously mean more of Sooryavansham, but let us not get into that, for there are more important things to discuss.

Q: What were the IPL media rights all about?

A: Remember how you used to watch IPL on SET Max in its early days? That was because Sony had bagged the IPL media rights for a decade. That contract expired in 2017, leaving the market wide open to fresh bidders.

Q: Who were the bidders?

A: Oh, lots. Let me see: beIN Sports, SuperSport, FollowOn, YuppTV, TIL, OSN, Airtel, Star, BamTech, Sony, Econet, Perform, Jio, and Facebook.

Q: Facebook? As in, the Facebook?

A: Yup, the Facebook. Now go ahead update your status and tag a hundred people with this bit of information to show off.

Q: Done that. Now, why are there organisations I have not heard of?

A: This auction was about rights for the Indian subcontinent as well as across the world. The big players from each market placed their bids for their respective zones.

Q: But if there is a bidder for every zone, how come Star won it globally? Did Star top the biddings for every zone?

A: No. Here is how it works. If the global bidding was not higher than INR 15,819.51 crores, BCCI would have sold individual rights for all markets to the highest bidder for every market.

Q: INR 15,819.51 crores? Is this a randomly chosen seven-digit number?

A: No. This is the sums of the maximum bids for all the zones. Remember, there are seven zones two for the Indian subcontinent and one each for the other five zones.

Q: Wait, why are there two rights for the Indian subcontinent?

A: For television and digital. The television rights were topped by good old Sony, who bid 11,050 crores. Star bid 6,196.64 crores, about 42% less.

Q: Oh wow, so Sony put all their eggs in the same basket?

A: Yeah, sort of.

Q: What about the digital segment of the Indian subcontinent?

A: That was topped by Facebook. If you ask me, it was a close thing: Facebook bid 3,900 crores, Airtel 3,280 crores, and Jio 3,075.72 crores.

Q: Star bid here as well? Wait, they have HotStar, don t they?

A: Yes, they went ahead with 1,443 crores. Obviously, there were three parties who bid more than twice…

Q: But Star won it in the end, just because they outdid everyone in aggregate.

A: Precisely.

Q: Hang on, how come you are giving me numbers just like that? Is there an official source?

A: No. I make things up.

Q: WHAT?

A: Relax. Here you go.

Q: But I cannot copy-paste it from here. Don t you have a table or something? 🙁

A: Of course we do. Here.

IPL media auction for 2018 to 2022: All prices in crores INR
Bidder Indian subcontinent Rest of World Zone A Rest of World Zone B Rest of World Zone C Rest of World Zone D Rest of World Zone E Total
Television Digital
beIN Sports 390.00 390.00
SuperSport 120.25 120.25
FollowOn 70.01 70.01
Yupp TV 100.12 234.65 334.77
TIL 1,787.50 53.30 185.25 2,026.05
OSN 211.25 211.25
Facebook 3,900.00 3,900.00
Airtel 3,280.00 3,280.00
Star 6,196.94 1,443.00 17.88 65.00 61.75 48.75 49.16 7,882.48
Bamtech 0.00
Sony 11,050.00 84.50 11,134.50
Econet 84.50 84.50
Perform 240.50 240.50
Jio 3,075.72 3,075.72
Highest 11,050.00 3,900.00 70.01 390.00 120.25 48.75 240.50 15,819.51

Q: So Star was not the highest bidder for anything barring Zone D?

A: No. And even there they were the only bidder, so they won by default.

Q: And then they bid separately for the global rights and just about beat the 15,819.51-crores mark? Woah, that is awesome!

A: Yes. The difference was 3.3%, a mere 527.99 million.

Q: That was a close shave! Just curious, how much had Sony bid for in 2008?

A: INR 8,200 crores for 10 years, which comes to 820 crores a year.

Q: Hey, but that is only television! What about digital?

A: Novi Digital paid 302.2 crores for 3 years, in other words, 100.7 crores a year. In all, BCCI used to get INR 920.2 crores a year.

Q: What is it now per year?

A: INR 3,269.5 crores.

Q: What? But that means, that means…

A: Yes. 🙂