Star seals IPL digital rights deal for US$48MN

DetailsRebecca Hawkes | 11 February 2015

Star India's wholly-owned subsidiary Novi Digital Entertainment has secured the online media rights for the Indian Premier League (IPL) in a three-year deal worth INR3.022 billion (US$48.48 million).

Novi Digital Entertainment was awarded the Internet and mobile video streaming rights for the T20 cricket tournament during 2015, 2016 and 2017 by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). The deal covers the world except for the US.

"Our partnership with Novi Digital Entertainment augurs well for the Pepsi IPL, as well as the millions of fans who follow the tournament, and we are delighted to commence an association with the organisation whose bid was found to be the most deserving," said Sanjay Patel, secretary, BCCI.

Live action from the IPL will be streamed on Star's recently launched digital platform hotStar, Sanjay Gupta, the broadcaster's chief operating officer, told Live Mint. No decision has yet been made as to whether matches will also be streamed on the company's online sports service

India's governing body for cricket met in Mumbai on 10 February to review the three submitted bids, from Times Internet (operator of Cricbuzz and BoxTV), Multi Screen Media (operator of Sony Liv), and Novi Digital Entertainment.

A cumulative reserve price of INR 1.2 billion over the three IPL seasons beginning 2015 had been set by the BCCI.

The last sale of IPL global media rights – covering Internet, mobile, radio and TV (for certain territories) – was won by a consortium led by Times Internet, for a total fee of INR2.616 billion for the four year period to 2014. Star worked in partnership with Times Internet to stream live action and jointly market last year's IPL tournament.

With this latest deal, 21st Century Fox's Asian pay-TV network now owns the BCCI cricket rights in India, the rights for the forthcoming ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 and the rights to all ICC tournaments for the next eight years to 2023 – as well as being an official sponsor of the Indian Cricket Team to April 2017.