The media rights tender for the bilateral cricket games in India will be released in the coming day or two. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and its consultants, Ernst & Young, have informed the potential parties that the highly anticipated announcement will be made by Tuesday (July 25), if not within the next 24 hours. The target date to complete the media rights sale is set for August 19.
Prospective participants have not been clearly informed whether the method of sale will be through e-auction or closed bidding as there seems to be still some debate on this. However, considering the BCCI’s past experience and blockbuster sale of the Indian Premier League (IPL) media rights last year, it is perceived that the sale will be conducted through online bidding. The media rights will be valid for a period of five years, from 2023 to 2027.
The exact number of matches and their breakdown in terms of Tests, ODIs, and T20Is has not been finalized yet, as the BCCI apparently is yet to lock in a few series. However, it is expected to be around 100 matches, which is similar to the number in the last cycle. For reference, the previous cycle had 103 games. The new cycle is expected to follow the recent trend in world cricket, with fewer ODIs and more Twenty20 Internationals than in the last cycle, while the number of Tests is likely to remain the same.
In the previous deal that ended in March, the BCCI had sold the bilateral rights to Disney Star for INR 6138.10 Crore, approximately INR 61 Crore per international game across formats. The base price this time is expected to be substantially higher than that number. The rights will be sold in different packages, with linear and digital rights separated, and bidders will not have the option to present a consolidated package bid.
Other packages, such as the non-India/rest of the world rights, will also be available. However, it is unlikely that the tender will include a special non-exclusive package like the one that contributed significantly to the final value of the IPL tender, which reached INR 48390 Crore ($6.2 Billion).
The BCCI aims to complete the sale by August 19, allowing the new buyer at least one month to market the first series in the cycle – a three-match ODI series against Australia in September, planned as a preparatory series for the World Cup in October-November.