IPL stands for Indian Premier League, but when its global media rights were sold at a humongous Rs 16 thousand crores (yeah, 16 with ten zeros), the game better be called ‘Indian Pricey League’. The actual bid is Rs 16,347.50 Crores, but against the 16k, 347.50 crores look dire, like – eh!

So on Monday, the auction for global TV Broadcast and Digital Rights of Indian Pricey League (call it that, may I?) by Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), for next five years began. It was anticipating enough for many media channels of course, because IPL is watched so widely across India because most Indian simply cannot get enough of cricket watching. Interestingly, there was hardly any contest between bidders, yet the figures of the bids unbelievably rocketed and the final bid by Star India smash-broke-shattered all previous records! The media rights of one of the most popular cricket league, for next five years (2018-2022), were sold to Star India at a massive, massive price of Rs 16,347.50 Crores! This figure is not even close to any of the bids from other 14 companies, not even current rights holder – Sony TV.

The five year rights contract amount is nothing even close to previous 9-year-long rights for Sony TV which costed Rs Rs 10,436 crore; but the Star India bid raised the numbers by 182%! With the unbelievable bid, the cost of media rights per one IPL match is Rs 54.5 Crore; making the second highest grossing sporting leagues in the entire world after the English Premier League (Rs 84 crore per match). This means each ball bowled at any IPL game will cost Rs 23.3 lakh to Star India! Isn’t this just insane amount of money!?

Well, not so much to Star India who has done all the math and they are expecting to hurl a fortune from the game because – they will charge Rs 15 lakh per 10 seconds of advertisement during any match. But will the advertisers pay so much money? They will if they want to advertise, says Star India CEO – Uday Shankar. Star India has bought both TV as well as digital rights for IPL and aims to create a complete experience for the cricket fans; with a hope to make millions from the aggrandized game called IPL cricket matches – the priciest league game in India.

241